About Christie Glasshouses and Sheds
IN 1912, CHRISTIE LIMITED produced its first glasshouse. Measuring approximately 18ft x IOft (5.5 metres x 3.0 metres), it was custom-built for Mr W.A. Scott of Heriot Row, a Dunedin bicycle shop proprietor, and it was still growing food 70 years later.
Christie, which was founded as a plumbing contracting business in 1881, went on to become New Zealand’s largest manufacturer of glasshouses — chances are your grandparents’ glasshouse was a Christie. The company later added garden sheds and sheetmetal garden accessories to its range of quality products.
The Christie brand became respected by both home and commercial growers. In their first 100 years Christie Glasshouses were installed in many high profile locations, including Dunedin Botanic Garden,
University of Otago Botany Department, agricultural institutions and research centres, forestry nurseries and the (now gone) T.J. Edmonds factory gardens in Christchurch, a photo of which graces the cover of the ‘Edmonds Cookery Book’.
In 1968 the company began exporting with a shipment of 100,000 metal garden stakes going to Great Britain and the first glasshouses to Australia. In 1978, a New Zealand missionary determined to promote New
Zealand-made products in Japan initiated the sale Of Christie Glasshouses in that country. Christie also exported tens Of thousands Of mini glasshouses throughout Australia, Asia and the Pacific.
Christie was a company of innovators determined to help its customers get the best from the glasshouses it made. In 1968 it published the ‘Christie Glasshouse Guide’, a comprehensive 144 page book which was the first of its kind to be especially written for New Zealand and Australian conditions. The book provided a down-to-earth, month-by-month guide on all aspects of glasshouse culture. The last edition was published in 1996.
In 2012 the Christie business was taken under the wing of Allan’s Engineering and Sheetmetal Services Limited of Dunedin, where it continues to manufacture the great kiwi Christie range.
The Allan’s Group comprises Engineering, Sheet Metal and Stainless Steel fabrication, EcoMax pellet fires, ChemStore NZ Ltd, Allan’s Long Run Roofing and Scaffolding and Christie Glasshouses and Sheds.
The above image is of the Christie glasshouse built for the Department of Botany at the University of Otago in the late 1920s. The glasshouse was in service for over 70 years. Photo courtesy of Ian Hall, taken whilst a student of the Botany Department in the 1970s.
Allan’s 15 Year Tick Guarantee
Allan’s is a Dunedin company built on a foundation of offering good value, well-made products and friendly service. Now that Christie is part of the Allan’s group, the long Christie tradition of quality and value, is backed by Allan’s 15 Year Tick Guarantee. The terms of this guarantee can be found here.