Spiky Squares

During the month of March, Becky, Queen of the Square format, is back. This month she would like to see anything spiky, jagged, bristly, serrated, prickly or barbed in whatever interpretation you like. The only rule: it must be a square. March Squares Pseudopanax crassifolius, horoeka, or lancewood, is a New Zealand native tree with an…

Alternative Advent #15

In the period leading to Christmas some people buy an Advent Calendar to check off each day before December 25. Usually intended for children, it appears that in recent years there has been a rise in the popularity of luxury ones aimed at indulgent adults who feel the necessity to treat themselves on the run-up to…

garden photography: winter garden

In January I’m looking for a Winter Garden (This month I want to see photos and stories about winter gardens. You can interpret this any way you want; a garden in winter, winter flowers, or plants in a glasshouse) The Auckland Domain Winter Garden complex in Auckland, New Zealand, is a national treasure. It was designed in the early…

Indian Char Bagh Garden

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. Indian Char Bagh Garden The ‘char bagh’ or ‘enclosed four part’ garden has been one of the most significant types of traditional garden. Between the 8th and 18th centuries these gardens spread throughout…

American Modernist Garden

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. American Modernist Garden Modernist style was an international phenomenon, not just a 20th century American  tradition. Its gardens are focused on relaxed outdoor living, a perfect match to sun soaked, upwardly mobile California. Sunny yellow outdoor chairs,…

Italian Renaissance Garden

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. Italian Renaissance Garden In the 15th and 16th Century the cities of Italy experienced an unprecedented flowering of arts and sciences, which included the art of garden design and the science of horticulture….

Japanese Garden of Contemplation

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. Japanese Garden of Contemplation Fluid echoes dance – Ripples of sun and water Hold dreams in the eaves ~ Vonnie Hughes, Auckland (winner of the Hamilton Gardens Japanese Poetry Compettion 1998 Take time…

English Flower Garden

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. English Flower Garden The style which inspired the English flower garden at Hamilton Gardens is the Arts and Crafts of the nineteenth century, commonly referred to as ‘gardens of a golden afternoon‘. Unfortunately for…

Chinese Scholar’s Garden

This garden is one of the Paradise Garden Collection at Hamilton Gardens in New Zealand and follows on from my previous post. Chinese Scholar’s Garden (Yichang-Yuan) The tradition of the Chinese scholars building dates back to the Tang Dynasty in the 7th century. For them, gardens were havens for relaxation, meditation and the cultivation of…

Garden Portrait: Hamilton Gardens

Hamilton is New Zealand’s fourth largest city and is located about 2 hours drive south of Auckland in the centre of the Waikato region. The Gardens are quite famous and deservedly so as they are unique. It won the International Garden of the Year award in 2014. The garden is alongside the Wakaito River which…