A tour of New Zealand Gardens; Part 2

One of the Hamilton gardens–The Tudor garden featuring standards with mythical creatures.

The Auckland Botanical Garden was a large expanse of lawns and trees, but a disappointment as the roses were not well tended. There were some worthy sculptor pieces in the gardens.

We visited 21 gardens on this 2 week tour. Our first garden, Ayrlies, north of Auckland, is acknowledged by some as one of the outstanding gardens of New Zealand. It started out as three acres in 1964 and has overtime been expanded to 46 acres. It featured several ponds and large swathes of lawn and informal colorful perennial borders.

Sculptures were one of the good features at the Auckland Botanical Gardens.

The Hamilton Gardens were really exceptional and we had a guide to take us through the gardens allotted for our visit. Hamilton Gardens acknowledges that there is a history to tell about gardens, their development over time and across cultures. The gardens were established on a four acre former rubbish heap—a marvelous improvement. The gardens through history covered about 4000 years and, although we only saw a few of the 21 gardens, they were spectacular. The garden has plans to add more over time as money allows.

The Italian Renaissance garden featured Citrus, statuary and flowers.

Our first garden was a traditional classic Japanese garden of the Muromachi period from 1333 to 1568. A monochromatic abstraction of a natural landscape was on one side and a water featured landscape was on the other side of a pavilion overlook. We visited a classic Maori garden where Kumara (sweet potatoes) were a staple.

The Japanese landscape garden was beautifully done.
The Maori garden of the staple sweet potatoes.

The Indian Char Bagh Gardens were one of the most widespread traditional ‘Paradise Gardens’ or ‘Universal Gardens’ because of their widespread use. They were enclosed, four part gardens spread by Muslims from Asia to North Africa to Spain during the 8th to 18th centuries. They usually had a water feature and were a sensual experience of fragrance, sound and floral beauty.

The Char Bagh Garden

The Italian Renaissance gardens were filled with statuary, water features, citrus, flowers and hedges. The 16th century Tudor garden featured a tower overlooking knot gardens with lots of heraldic standards featuring fantasy beasts such as dragons and unicorns. Most Tudor gardens were destroyed by Cromwell or neglect.

We also looked at a large kitchen garden, herb garden and a small tropical garden too. It was a great day enjoying the history and variety of gardens.

If you have a gardening related question you can contact the UC Master Gardeners at 209-953-6112. More information can be found on our website:  http://sjmastergardeners.ucanr.edu/CONTACT_US/

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Post a comment

Post a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Rules. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or fill out this form.
  • Categories

  • Archives