Ardmona is a rural village and orchard area in northern Victoria, 3 km west of Mooroopna. It is in the west Goulburn Valley irrigation area. Its name came from a farm named ‘Ardmona’, owned by Charles and Lochie McDonald. It was purchased by a private syndicate in 1886 for subdivision for irrigated farms.

The initiative for the venture came from the owner of one of several vineyards in the area, who had saved his vine cuttings by use of a water tank on a wagon.

By 1891 numerous orchards were established in what had formerly been a wheat/sheep area. The Ardmona fruitgrowers association was formed, and built its Fruitgrowers Hall in 1893. The local school, named Mooroopna District when opened in 1875, was renamed Ardmona in 1890.

Irrigation was provided by local waterworks trusts until the State Rivers and Water Supply Commission took over the Goulburn Weir and completed the Waranga Basin (1909) for the west Goulburn Valley irrigation area. By 1914, 30 years after the first plantings, the Ardmona district had 1008 hectares of orchards. Frosty winter conditions are optimum for the development of fruit buds.

In 1922 Ardmona fruitgrowers established a dehydration plant and two years later a fruit cannery in Mooroopna. Its main canned fruits are peaches, pears and apricots, including Pullars Cling Peach which was bred at Ardmona.

The Ardmona village has a store, a hall, a school (26 pupils, 2014), a reserve, a church and a recreation reserve. In 1997 Ardmona Foods (fruit cannery) won the Age/Dun and Bradstreet award for business development, having developed 117 new products in a declining area of Australian industry. It provided 900 jobs in the local economy. In 2002 Ardmona Foods merged with the Shepparton Preserving Company (SPC) and in 2005 the new entity was taken over by Coca-Cola Amatil.

Census populations have been:

Area Census date population
Ardmona 1911 340
  1947 629
  1961 592
Ardmona and environs 2011 540

Further Reading

W.H. Bossence, Tatura and the Shire of Rodney, Melbourne, 1969

D.M. McLennan, History of Mooroopna, Ardmona and district, Back to Mooroopna Committee, 1936, facsimile, Mooroopna Historical Society, 1984