Blenheim Gardens

The South Island of NZ tour starts today and this is the route to the gardens:

We took the ferry through Cook Strait and then visited Upton Oaks, the chocolate factory and Hortensia House.


The ferry took us, the bus and our luggage from Wellington to Picton on the South Island of NZ. It was beautiful weather and a beautiful 3 hour cruise of 30 miles:


The owner tells us about her garden. It is about 5 acres including the Olives. She and her husband work on it with no other help.

This is a garden of symmetry, hedges and flowers. It is broken up into individual rooms each of which has a theme:

Garden room of colors:

Red sector

Purple sector

Yellow sector

White sector

Garden room of perennial borders:

Garden room of Olives, rabbits and rest:

Garden room for doves:

Gazebo garden room:

Swimming pool garden room:

Quiet sitting areas:


English Boxwood not pruned

English Boxwood recently pruned

Kohuhu (Pittosporum tenuifolium) Native to NZ

Western Red Cedar (Thuja plicata cv.)

Box Honeysuckle (Lonicera nitida)


The owner is from Reunion which is part of France. She moved to New Zealand 23 years ago and bought this property that had a spring fed stream on it. There were existing trees and shrubs but she did most of the planting.

This video and these photos show the approach to Hortensia and the front gate. The stream is visible as well as the vineyards and long driveway. She owns about 40 acres of grapes and sheep pasture. Her garden is over 2 acres.

It is very windy in this section of Marlborough, NZ so a previous owner planted a windbreak of Poplars along the property line very close together:

Front entry, water feature and lawn:

Her garden and her house are built in the French style and you can see that she is meticulous about details:

The vegetable garden is centered on the iron gazebo:

A Monet-like bridge crosses the stream to connect to the garden on the other side:

The color of the water matches the color of the bridge which is the same color of the roof of the house:

The garden on the other side of the stream is dominated by a white gazebo:

Interesting Plants:

Yellow Giant Dogwood (Cornus controversa ‘Variegata Aurea’)

Golden Fullmoon Maple (Acer shirasawanum ‘Aureum’)

Pink Blossom Tree (Virgilia divaricata) Native to NZ.

Sweet Mock Orange (Philadelphus coronarius). Very fragrant

Dove Tree, Handkerchief Tree (Davidia involucrata)

Yesterday-Today-And-Tomorrow Shrub (Brunsfelsia pauciflora ‘Floribunda’)

Fringe Tree (Chionanthus retusus)

Japanese Mock Orange (Pittosporum tobira)

Rosa ‘Raspberry Hill’

Tomorrow – Weldon House, Paripuma Garden

One Comment Add yours

  1. Linda Press Wulf says:

    I loved this one, especially all the clear captions.
    Thank you, Barry.

    Linda Wulf

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