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A visit to Barewood is fantastical.  To pull up in the driveway, step through the gate and see an old homestead, appearing to nest on a bed of flowers, dripping in translucent white wisteria feels entirely secret and totally unreal! The drive up the Awatere Valley from Seddon with its bare hills, flats full of grape vines and the looming rocky skyline of Tapuae-o-Uenuku gives no hint at the eden you will arrive at.  Barewood, like many large New Zealand gardens of its kind, is the home base of a wider farming property. Struggles

As I’ve fallen further down this gardening rabbit hole and the idea to capture and share the intimacy of NZ gardens on film grew closer to reality….I knew that Winterhome would be at the top of my list.  I first visited Winterhome at Garden Marlborough in 2018. It was the first day of my first garden tour and I remember well the feeling of dragging my jaw around the endless avenues, paths and moments of glory of this garden. I simply could not believe that I had spent 38 years driving up and down the

The first thing I’d like to stress, is that you do NOT need to be a knowledgeable, experienced or even a fanatical gardener to attend Garden Marlborough. The special and starkly different atmosphere’s created by these gardeners will appeal to anyone whose wheels are spun by design, vibe, detail and spaces.  The next thing is,  …. you do not need to have a BIG garden to leave bursting with translatable ideas and a guaranteed boost to your enthusiasm. 90% of the gardens I visited at Garden Marlborough are the product of people with

The beauty of any and ALL green thumbed advice I share is that I can’t be told I’m wrong. Why? Because you cannot put beginners down for trying! Plus, I have learnt over my two and a bit growing seasons, that gardening forgives mistakes just as easily as it punishes plans too well laid. Perfectionists…take a breath, its time give way to Mother Nature and simply give greenery a go with no promises of success. I had meant to share a little guide to creating hanging baskets for you at the end

I’ll be honest. I only started growing plants from seed under duress.  At the beginning of my gardening adventure I found it so easy and honestly, surprisingly affordable to pick up punnets of seedlings from garden centres and hardware stores. They had incredibly good strike rates once planted out and I could often pick them up really cheaply during promotions. But, the success of these happy purchases added fuel to my flowery fire! I was wanting MORE flowers and with this, MORE interesting ones like the those I was reading about

“The first thing to remember is that plants inherently want to grow, so give them the right conditions, nine times out of ten they will do what you want them to do. The second is that gardening is not an exact science….” Clare Foster Author – “The Flower Garden” How to grow flowers from seed. I’ve discovered that gardening is a little like cooking.Everyone’s Gran has a special way to stop the pasta sticking or weird ingredient to create the best Ginger Gems. It’s the same with gardening…. you’ll show

Here we go! It feels like writing or talking about gardens without imagery is the same as those long winded perfume reviews in magazines that you can’t smell! Boring and frustrating springs to mind!  I’m not out to convert anyone to become a gardener, but I am determined to help bridge the big empty gap interested beginners will find looking for localised information and inspiration.  I waded around in that void for ages and wished I could connect with those that understood my plight! It felt obvious to me that sharing snippets

One of the first barriers I hit when dipping my toe into gardening was the “lingo”. I found that gardener’s in the “know” would readily answer my questions of “what, when, how” but inadvertently create MORE blank faced confusion when using exclusive garden language in their explanations. This created brain explosions and a real barrier to my enthusiasm to even continue learning!  Now I do understand their need to use gardening terms and their huge importance to designing, learning and growing a garden that I would love. The plant categories below

When launching into the unknown, I’ll admit, it can be really hard to even know where to turn for advice and inspiration! I’ll also admit, I’ve found it pretty tricky to find resources on growing a flower garden in NZ (beyond vegie gardens) and often turn to the cult gardening scene in the UK for ideas and solid information.Before we explore the nitty gritty of the actual growing of our gardens in blog posts to come, firstly, I wanted to share all the avenues I have discovered to get my previously

As an 8-year-old being bribed to do my mother’s weeding, my lack of interest in gardening far outweighed my thirst for pocket money. Not much changed into adulthood and while I definitely appreciated gardens at surface level, I was mostly focused on pillaging neighbourhood blooms that hung over fences. Fast forward to 36 years of age and I found myself having moved back to Christchurch with a husband-to-be, a terrific villa in Linwood and the very real prospect that I was going to live there for some time. The transient

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