Bullocks transporting goods
North-east section of Nobelius' Gembrook Nurseries
Workers packing tree seedlings into crates for export
Packing Shed and Nobelius Heritage Park today
The four and a half hectare heritage site was part of the world-famous Nobelius Nursery, started in 1886 by Swedish immigrant Carl Axel Nobelius. The nursery exported fruit and ornamental trees to five continents.
Carl Axel Nobelius migrated from Sweden in 1872 and with his training and experience in horticulture he quickly obtained work as a nursery assistant, and later foreman, for the prominent landscaping firm Taylor & Sangster of Toorak. He then worked for South Yarra nurseryman Joseph Harris.
However, Nobelius dreamed of having his own nursery, so whilst continuing to work for Joseph Harris in South Yarra he began looking for land where he might be able to fulfil his ambition.
Bullocky David Charman selected land in 1890, extending from Charman Ave to Menzies Creek up to Monbulk Rd. He named the property “Brookdale”.
The Charman sons, Edgar & Percy, ran the farm with their father. Both David and Edgar had bullock teams. They attended church in Avon Rd, Avonsleigh which was then known as East Emerald. .
David & Lily made many friends who came to stay and as a result they started a guest house sometime around 1908.
The house became known as ’Brookdale Guest House’ and was located between Charman Ave and Brookdale Ave off Monbulk Rd, Emerald.
In 1914 Brookdale Guest House was sold to the Ferres family, and the farm later sold to Mr Robert James in 1980