In 1873, William Chandler Junior selected 54 acres beside the Dandenong Creek in The Basin for which he paid one pound an acre. After clearing the land, Chandler began growing vegetables and later turned his attention to fruit growing and flowers. This was the beginning of the famous 'Como Nursery Gardens' well known throughout Victoria as the first producer of Boronia and specialists in Azaleas, Camellias and rare plants imported from Japan and other western countries.
In 1996, the property was purchased by George & Pat Hetrel. The Hetrel's had an overall vision to not only restore the 16 acres but to also enhance the undeveloped areas of the property with appropriate landscaping. The garden holds two collections of plants, Magnolia and Prunus which are now registered with the Garden Plant Conservation Association of Australia. There are over fifty-five Magnolias alongside many other shrubs and trees that have delighted crowds over recent years.