|Trip to look for Hellebores in NZ- the latter part of the series of this
*Clifton Homestead Nursery 2009.9.20
One of the main purposes this time was to visit a hellebore nursery in
NZ. It was located 10 kilometers north of Clinton. It was a peaceful and
quiet place where we could see so many sheep here and there on our way
to and around the nursery. The owners were very frank and friendly and so we enjoyed talking about
hellebores. This nursery is famous for having produced the worldwide brand
H.niger called ‘White Magic’. Although H.niger had already gone to seed,
H.argutifolius and many hybrids were still in full bloom under the flowering
(Their house and garden)
(Worldwide brand H.niger,"White Magic" produced by the nursery)
*Queens Park 2009.9.21
After leaving Catlins, we drove to Queens Park in Intercargill. It is one
of the best public gardens in NZ where we can see roses, rhododendrons,
azaleas and hellebore hybrids. A lot of big H.argutifolius were especially
impressive to me.
*Queens Gardens 2009.9.23
On September 22nd, we enjoyed a cruise in Milfordsound. On the morning
of September 23rd, we tried to find hellebores in Queens Gardens, but there
were no hellebores there. Instead, we were satisfied with the breathtaking
view of Queenstown.
(Breathtaking view of Queenstown)
*Ashburton Domain & Gardens 2009.9.25
On our way back to Christchurch we stopped by Ashburton Domain & Gardens and saw a lot of hellebore hybrids and H.argutifolius.
*Riccarton House and Bush 2009.9.27
There were a lot of places planted with hellebores in and near Christchurch;
we saw many hellebore hybrids covered with the red petals of the camellia
at Riccarton House and Bush.
It was very beautiful.
(California Lilac tree)
(Hellebore hybrids covered with the red petals of the camellia )
ps (written by Toshio Noji in November, 2012)
As you know, a big earthquake hit the central part of Christchurch in February,
Over 180 people, including Japanese students who were studying English
at an English conversation school there, died and so many buildings, including
the cathedral,were greatly damaged. A one kilometer area surrounding the
city center is still a no-go zone.
Fortunately some gardens, like Mona Vale and Christchurch botanic gardens which I mentioned in the first part, were not affected by the quake and are still open to the public, according to my kiwi (New Zealander) friends in Christchurch.
I hope all the damaged cathedral, buildings, roads, etc. will be repaired soon and I would like to finish the series of this trip.
Finally, I would like to say a special thanks to Christine, our host mother
and guide of this trip, and also thanks to Ken and Kate, the owners of
Clifton Homestead Nursery, for their warm hospitality during our stay.