Friday, October 30, 2009


My sister Joan and her husband Denis have arrived to spend a few days with us. It's to be a very special time, as for the first time since we were children we are having a joint birthday celebration, our birthdays are 10 days apart, and its made more special as we are celebrating Joan's 70th Birthday.

Its is also start of the Taranaki Rhododendron and Gardens Festival so we have both chosen places we would like to visit during the next few days..

We started the day with a visit to Tupare in New Plymouth as not only did we wish to visit the gardens, the house tour was a must on our list.Tupare was a private family house and garden established in 1932 and is now owned by the Taranaki Regional Council. it was amazing going through the house. built in the arts & craft style it is a Chapman-Taylor designed house. see for photos of the house.

The gardens are extensive and in parts the paths are quite steep, we only did part of the walks today, its a must for a return visit soon.
 I loved this display of deep blue Iris Siberica gainst the brick wall in part of the garden near the Gardeners cottage.

After that we visited two gardens each having chosen one, we chose small gardens that compared in size to our own, and each quite different.
"Thorveton"  a small secluded town garden was full of all the tiny delights I enjoyed and was beautifully layed out. In contrast the other garden we visited was a newly developed one on a small section and Joan was interested to see the use of textures and layouts as her own garden is quite a new one.
From there to Lake Mangamahoe for our picnic lunch. The sun came out but unfortunatly the clouds covered the view of the mountain, in the distance beyond the end of the Lake.

We then went on to visit Kings Garden on the way home.A large garden, beautifully set out with lovely paths that rambled through the garden. I specially wanted to see the yellow Candalebra Primulas growing beside the tiny stream. I  would love to have a stream in my garden and be able to grow them. In our garden we have made a bog corner and at this stage  two pink ones are growing well.

Joan and Denis admiring the primulas.

A corner in the King's Garden

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