Join the renowned Glyn Church, known as The Constant Gardener and a prolific writer for a guided tour of 6 premier gardens and 1 nursery around New Plymouth and North Taranaki Glyn will give you an outline about each garden prior to your visit and then guide you around sharing his indepth knowledge of the plants and their significance in the location.
Leaving at 8.30am the first stop will be at Riverlea, a peaceful, large, and diverse garden which flows around a relocated and restored 120-year-old villa. Since 2003, Ann and Vince Naus, have poured their talents and passion into creating their garden.
To form varied vistas, they have engaged an array of ideas, including establishing a perennial border, woodland garden, a maple walk and a boardwalk to the river starring native plants.
After your morning tea stop next on the itinerary will be Jungle Nurseries . Jungle Nurseries is the culmination of 30 years of experience by the renowned landscape designer Michael Mansvelt. The collection of plants are the ones that will grow best in the various climates thoughout New Zealand.
A visit to Tupare will be next on the programme. Tūpare is a premier landscaped garden with a stunning Chapman-Taylor designed house in the Arts & Crafts style. In addition to the beautiful hard landscaping, stately plantings of trees create shelter and a magical atmosphere. Leading all the way down to the Waiwhakaiho River, winding paths cut out of the hill-side lead to surprising vistas and intimate garden rooms.
Lunch will be at Quails Nest, a relatively new addition to New Plymouth’s dining scene situated with a great outlook over the Waiwhakaiho Valley.
After lunch Pukemara Garden will be your next destination. This garden has become known as a place of peace and serenity to Garden Festival visitors. Rhododendron enthusiast Alan Morris has created stunning floral vistas with subtropical vireyas, fuschias, roses and perennials tucked on a hillside property in New Plymouth.
Next stop will be Sequoia Steps, an inner city hideaway oriented to comfortable city living starring 26 wooden steps that flow up and down a tranquil spot besides New Plymouth’s Awanui Cemetery.
Ngā Manu (Bird Garden) has an excellent variety of plantings, including a 40 year old male giant ginkgo tree, a variety of camellia trees, hydrangeas and rhododendrons, much to the delight of the resident native birdlife which inspired the gardens name.
Your last garden visit will be to Hurworth Country Garden. This is a graceful country garden packed with flourishing beds, borders and mass plantings developed around a 1910 villa on the property. Special features include expansive lawns, established native and exotic trees, brick and stone walls as well as formal and woodland plantings.