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92 High Street, Blenheim
0800 627 527
This always popular tour features a selection of large gardens, diverse in climate but all framed by spectacular scenery, from the rolling Pacific to the rugged Kaikoura ranges. The tour includes the well-known gardens of Barewood, Winterhome and Paripuma, all recognised as ‘Gardens of National Significance’ by the New Zealand Gardens Trust. Morning and afternoon teas and a delicious packed picnic lunch complete the experience.
Barewood features a classic potager with brick paths framed by box and lavender dividing beds of fruit, vegetables and flowers. Old-fashioned apples and pears are espaliered on iron arches. The garden was planted to complement the century-old homestead with rambling roses encircling the veranda, and clambering over brick walls. Plant connoisseurs will find much to inspire them.
Winterhome features long vistas with secrets unfolding at every turn. There are wonderful mass plantings, including Mediterranean-type plants that thrive on this East Coast property. This garden is structured and planted for year-round appeal with sensational Pacific Ocean views. The garden avoids current fashion trends, has a timeless ambiance, and celebrates the vision and drive of the late Sue Macfarlane.
A continually evolving native garden, this once barren and windswept beachfront property, purchased in 1999, was planted in several thousand ngaios to create shelter for other interesting New Zealand native species. The aim was to create an indigenous sanctuary for wildlife and to use native plants in a formal manner. The result is five hectares of an increasingly diverse range of plants surrounding a strong central vista across Cloudy Bay to Port Underwood. In 2011 this garden was awarded the Marlborough Environmental Landscape award.
Ha He Naca lies nestled amongst the grapes of the Awatere Valley. Established conifer hedges and an orchard surround this traditional garden filled with roses, hydrangeas, peonies, French lavender, hellebores and camellias. Mature trees such as huge Californian redwoods, walnuts and spectacular weeping elms provide the backdrop to this particularly tranquil garden.