Home' Greymouth Star : January 25th 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
In the Garden
Wednesday, January 25, 2017 - 7
years, only a
to the New
Zealand people or bought by
far-sighted local authorities to
open to the public.
Taranaki is fortunate to
have a trio of such gardens —
Tupare, Pukeiti and
Hollard Gardens — all free
Now surrounded by houses,
when Russell Matthews
bought a 4.5ha New Plymouth
hillside in 1932, it was out in
The land, covered with gorse
and blackberries, was bisected
by a stream and needed vision
to realise its potential.
As a setting for their English
Arts and Crafts house,
Russell and his wife, Mary,
transformed the wasteland
into a garden reminiscent of
an English park.
The first tree planted at
Tupare was not European,
though, but a kauri.
Deciduous trees followed,
including a tulip tree
the then-rare dawn
glyptostroboides) and a
Japanese walnut ( Juglans
Maples (acers) are seen
in abundance at Tupare,
the numerous varieties
demonstrating the size and
leaf-colour range, as well as
their ability to do well in
Tupare’s friable volcanic
There are some flowers but
trees are the standout feature
of Tupare, so if you want
blossoms, head to Hollard
Gardens in central Taranaki,
where Bernard Hollard fenced
off part of his farm to grow
azaleas and rhododendrons,
some of which can still be seen
70 years on.
He bred Kaponga, probably
the most popular early red
rhododendron, released in
1979, a year after his death.
An eyecatcher in Hollard’s
bush walk is a huge native
tetrandra) or kohia, believed
to be several hundred years
old, while nearby are two
tall manna gums (eucalyptus
viminalis) planted by Bernard
The fast-growing gums
were popular in Taranaki for
fence posts and firewood but
unsuitable as timber.
Numerous other shrubs
and trees attest to Bernard’s
wide-ranging interest, from
natives to Persian witch
hazel (parrotia persica),
magnolia sieboldii and
Chilean myrtus luma,
notable for its cinnamon-
coloured bark and white
flowers in late summer.
hostas, false lily of the
pink lily of the valley
and forget-me-nots add
interest, while the bog
garden comes to life from
October with hostas,
primulas and irises.
For colour at any
time of year, Hollard
Gardens is well worth
the 50-minute drive
from New Plymouth
but spring is the time to
see Pukeiti at its best,
as the focus is on the
rhododendrons that have
made it famous.
These days, a push
is being made to make
the garden more popular
with families and it will be
interesting to see how well
this works, given the specialist
nature of its core collection
and the importance of
maintaining that focus.
Begun in 1951 by William
Douglas Cook — who had
earlier developed Gisborne’s
Eastwoodhill arboretum —
and Russell Matthews, of
Tupare, Pukeiti (“little hill”)
is named after the lava dome
visible from parts of the
The 20ha property, 23km
from New Plymouth on
a winding road, features
old and regenerating bush,
whose canopy protects the
rhododendrons, which are in
flower from late winter and
peak in October.
All three gardens are open
year-round and entry is free,
a plus for garden lovers on a
budget who are visiting the
Tupare, 487 Mangorei
Road, New Plymouth, is open
from 9am daily and people
are welcome to picnic in the
Hollard Gardens, 1686
Upper Manaia Road,
Kaponga, is open from 9am to
5pm daily (8pm in summer).
Pukeiti, 2290 Carrington
Road, New Plymouth, open
9am to 5pm daily.
with Gillian Vine
A glimpse of Russell and Mary Matthews’ arts and crafts-style house at Tupare.
Low-growing azaleas at Pukeiti.
Magnolia sieboldii at Hollard Gardens.
Rhododendrons at Hollard Gardens includes scented
R.nutallii x lindleyi.
The stream that flows through the grounds of Tupare.
The search for the country’s best shed is on
again in this month’s New Zealand Gardener
Features include great edibles to grow at the
bach, and how to keep plants alive when you go
It also looks at hot garden trends for the coming
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Entries close on Februar y 1.
Stone fruit summer
Stone fruit such as peaches and nectarines and
pipfruit (apples and pears) can be susceptible to
diseases like rust and powdery mildew during
summer. These diseases can infect the leaves,
reducing tree health. Diseases can be particularly
severe during and after periods of wet weather or
Lime sulphur is an effective fungicide that can be
used to control diseases on deciduous plants like
roses in winter, but can also be used at a lower rate
during summer to control rust and powdery mildew
on stonefruit (not apricots) and pipfruit. Spray trees
up until four weeks before har vest.
Reminder — if fruit tree diseases are a problem
in your garden this summer pop a note in your
gardening diary for early bud movement time
next spring, as starting a spray routine with lime
sulphur in spring can help to reduce summer disease
Citrus trace element deficiencies
— magnesium and iron
Healthy, well-fed citrus trees have the best chance
to provide us with buckets of home grown delicious
Regularly using a complete fertiliser specially
formulated with the right proportions of the
three main elements — nitrogen, phosphorus and
potassium — is an important step towards having
happy citrus trees.
Citrus also require trace elements in small
amounts for total plant health. Some soils and
potting mixes are deficient in these trace elements,
or the soil pH makes it hard for plants to access
So in addition to using complete fertilisers we may
need to give citrus a helping hand and provide them
with additional trace elements.
Two common trace element deficiencies of citrus
are iron and magnesium. It is simple to correct
both these deficiencies with specially designed trace
Iron (Fe): Th e main initial symptom of iron
deficiency is the young citrus leaves becoming
pale with the veins remaining dark green. Iron is
involved with photosynthesis, so plays an important
role in tree health and productivity. Iron deficiency
is particularly common in alkaline soil (soil with
a pH of greater than 7) as the iron becomes
unavailable to plants. Yates leaf greener iron chelate
is a fast acting liquid that corrects iron deficiency.
Applied as a foliar spray, it delivers iron directly to
the deficient leaves for faster results.
Magnesium (Mg): A magnesium deficiency
shows up as a dark green V shape at the base of
older citrus leaves, with the leaf tips becoming
increasingly pale. Magnesium deficiency can lead to
trees dropping their leaves and overall tree health
and harvest will suffer. Magnesium chelate is a fast
acting, concentrated form of liquid magnesium that
is sprayed on to citrus leaves to correct magnesium
Both leaf greener iron chelate and leaf greener
magnesium chelate stick firmly to the foliage and
are rain-fast in two to three hours.
Cherr y guava
as strawberry guava,
is an evergreen
shrub with glossy
green leaves that
bears fluffy white
flowers in late spring followed by small, tangy juicy
fruit during autumn and winter. The bright red
fruit can be made into delicious jams and jellies,
smoothies and desserts.
Cherry guava plants will grow in full sun to part
shade and are quite hardy, tolerating cool conditions
once established (they dislike harsh frosts). Cherry
guava can be grown as an attractive hedge and also
makes a great container plant.
To encourage fruiting, apply fruit and flower
booster liquid potash every two to four weeks, either
as a soil drench or foliar spray, and prune after
harvest to help keep the plant tidy and compact.
When you think of spiders and eye lashes you do
not tend to think of flowers. However, these are all
characteristics of some beautiful flowers to include
in your garden.
Mesmerising tea trees
commonly known as
tea trees are a group of
plants native to New
and South-east Asia.
Clever plant breeders
have been working
with tea trees to
enhance the range
of flower colours
and improve their
performance in home gardens.
“Mesmer eyes” is a striking variety of
leptospermum that has large flowers which open
white and change to pink as they age. The flowers
have striking dark centres and stamens that
resemble eye lashes, hence the name and it will
attract nectar-feeding birds and insects into the
This variety grows to about 1.5m tall and 1m
across and is both drought and frost hardy once
To help keep it tidy and compact, trim back well
after the spring flowering flush and feed with
organic plant food, which is an ideal gentle organic
plant food for phosphorus sensitive plants like
Winter is traditionally the time to give roses a
thorough prune. However, great results can be
achieved by also pruning roses in summer. Not
only does it promote a fresh flush of new growth
and flowers, it also helps to reduce the amount of
pruning needed in winter.
Rose pruning can appear slightly daunting, with
thorny stems trying to attack you and not knowing
exactly how to go about it. So what is the easiest
way to summer prune roses? Remove around a
third of all the growth. Do not worry about which
way the buds are facing, just prune. Sharp secateurs
will really help the pruning go smoothly — there
is nothing worse than battling with rusty old and
After pruning, it is an ideal opportunity to give
roses a summer spray to control the sap sucking pest
two spotted mite (which is very common during
hot summer weather) and also the diseases rust and
powdery mildew. Spray thoroughly over the pruned
To encourage the new leaves and flowers that will
develop after the summer prune, feed each week
with liquid plant food. It is rich in potassium to
encourage lots of autumn flowers, which will arrive
in around six to seven weeks’ time.
Spider y delight
flowers”, are hardy
annuals that will
help bring birds,
into the garden.
They will flower
from summer until
frosts arrive in autumn. The spidery flower heads, in
mauve, pretty pale pink and white, are held above
deep green foliage.
Cleomes grow to around 150cm tall and when
mass planted make a spectacular garden backdrop.
They can be grown in full sun and will also tolerate
Tip: Pruning will encourage a bushier plant with
more flowers and regular feeding will promote
healthy green foliage and lots of striking flowers.
Veggie patch pollinators: Plant some cleomes near
the vegie patch to help encourage pollinating and
Summer garden job file
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