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Author Topic: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture  (Read 15478 times)

Lesley Cox

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Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« on: November 19, 2006, 11:10:53 PM »
So this is where I came in. It was while trying to start this new thread last week that I was, I think, the first person to realize there was a major problem.  I was trying to post at 4pm while you were all asleep at 3am. But I thought the problem was only mine until Ian awoke and found it was everyone's.

My Northland holiday (2nd-7th November) was an amazing lesson in what they UP THERE can grow that we DOWN HERE, can't. NZ is small geographicaly but the variety of species cultivated here is enormous.

As always when I visit Ray and Theo, I brought home masses of seeds, cuttings, potted plants and assorted sub tropical fruit. Many I won't be able to grow but Ray always insists. "You never know..." he says.

Ray is 82, a retired GP from Auckland and widowed about 15 years ago; a good gardener with an all-encompassing knowledge of all kinds of plants, and much fitter than I am. If a large pot or chair is in his path as he walks though a garden, he doesn't walk round it, he jumps over!

Theo is 63 and another great gardener, brilliant propagator. He and Allan his partner had a large old-rose nursery near Auckland until they sold it around 10 years ago and moved north to beside Ray, their good friend. Allan died 4 years ago and Theo sold their very large house and garden and built an annex or "granny flat" onto Ray's house and they garden together now. In theory, Theo looks after Ray - who doesn't need it - and he does all the cooking, which is excellent.

The other members of what is a mad household are Mark, 34, chartered accountant who lives with the others at the weekend but with his girlfriend in Auckland during the week and Teddy, 18, corgi x fox terrier would be close, and waiting for God.

Paw-paws, bananas, various different passionfruit, tamarillos, kiwifruit, avocados, several different citrus fruit and the incredible cherimoya or custard apple are all picked fresh from the garden for dessert and either before or after every meal except breakfast, there are large gin-and-tonics - not optional! - but with ice and lemon juice, quite sour and just how I like them.

The garden is some 20 acres bounded on one side by the Pacific Ocean, on another by a mangrove swamp, a third by an enormous bamboo hedge (20 metres high!) and the fourth by a dusty road, lined with olive trees. It is very peaty and when Ray had some samples drilled recently, at 63 metres the drill was still bringing up pure peat. Originally it was probably kauri forest (Agathis australis)

The garden is frost-free and so many tropical and sub-tropical plants grow rampantly here (about 1 and a 1/2 hours north east of Auckland) but Ray also grows alpines of the easier kind such as campanulas, phloxes, dianthus, helianthemums and many more.  In fact, this was how I met him in the first place as he has always been an enthusiastic supporter of my own small nursery. One time I visited, he had Iris cristata and Pulsatilla vulgaris both growing happily beneath an equally happy banana!

So, to some pictures -



« Last Edit: November 19, 2006, 11:27:06 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2006, 11:14:33 PM »
This is one of many modern spuria iris hybrids. They grow to 2 metres up here
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2006, 11:21:59 PM »
OK, stop right here Lesley. Maggi or Ian, I need help please. How can I get pictures into the preview because there's no way to know where to write the text which applies to individual pictures. I open the attachment and don't know whether it has uploaded (no upload instruction) until the post appears in the thread, so I can't see in the reply box, where the text should go. And every pic wants to be a separate post, instead several in a column in one post.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

tonyg

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2006, 08:43:24 AM »
I can't wait for the next installment .... hope you've already had a reply from Ian or Maggi.  I have started to rename files for posting with a short descriptor.  This way they can be referenced back to the text which appears above the thumbnail pics.  Also I have started to post just a few at a time to help keep the text closer to the pics.  See the crocus thread ... I would have put all the pics in one post on the old forum but chose to split them this time.

Ian Y

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2006, 09:19:43 AM »
Lesley
The pictures do not appear in the preview like the old forum but they do appear in the post. At the moment all the pictures appear at the end of your post and the caption that appears with them is the actual file name. Tony's suggestion on naming the picture is a good one as we cannot insert the pictures into the text yet. We are looking into this and it may be possible for us to change the settings.
As for the time out this happens to me as well and there is a reason for it, you do not have to retype your message just hit the post button again.
This is a new forum to all of us and it will take us a while, as users, to work out how to navigate around and use all the features.
From the administration side we are also learning and we will have an ongoing program of adjusting settings and features within the limits of the software to best suit all our needs.
Thanks to you all for your support, please keep your comments and problems coming and be patient as we try and sort them all out.
Ian Young, Aberdeen North East Scotland   - 
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Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2006, 08:29:14 PM »
OK, sorry for my impatience Ian, I'll see what happens here. As with the iris above, these first are temperate things which I can or do grow in Otago

This stunning blue ixia is Theo's selection from a bunch of seedlings. The colour is like the best forms of Crocus baytopiorum. Happily, I brought a few home.
244-0

I've forgotten the cultivar name of this variegated euphorbisa. I think it's a form of E. characias and is around in perennial nurseries here
745-1

A lovely tawny-gold ixia hybrid, very tall. It is a named plant but Ray couldn't remember which.
747-2
« Last Edit: November 27, 2006, 08:31:57 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2006, 08:37:48 PM »
Well, that worked a little bit! I went to insert image and two little thingies came up with the cursor between them. Then to browse, opened the pic file and the cursor disappeared so I figured maybe the pic was in the right place. It seems that's the case, but right clicking on the show picture cross, doesn't work for me. The last of 4 pics, appeared all right.

Two native plants are Raoulia hookeri, a selected form which I posted the other day as R. australisMakara Form, under which name it is usually seen, but I have been corrected by yet another local lurker. Time he came out of the closet. (Sorry Stuart.) Cordyline `Red Fountain' is one of several new cabbage tree hybrids. This one grows with no trunk and here, is in a tall pot where the fountain-like foliage is shown to advantage.

246-0



« Last Edit: November 27, 2006, 08:43:20 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2006, 08:49:21 PM »
OK, another lesson learned! Even though the text box was empty and so a post couldn't be made, the attachment remained in the system and uploaded when the NEXT text was posted, along with the attachment I'd tried in the first place. Yeah, right!

Before the lads moved north, Theo and Allan had a very large "old" rose nursery on the northern edge of Auckland. and the present garden is filled with many species and old varieties. This below is a climbing seedling of Theo's, great multitudes of flowers, very compact and with a fantastic scent. Cuttings came home.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2006, 09:01:24 PM by Lesley Cox »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2006, 08:56:16 PM »
So if I don't go to Insert image (thanks Thomas, but no thanks) I get the picture without the little square with a cross in it.

Two lovely trees in bloom were Magnolia sieboldii and Malus ioensis plena.
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2006, 09:00:21 PM »
It seems I just can't get two pics posted at once. Only the second or last one comes up. Here's the Magnolia
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Maggi Young

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2006, 09:04:06 PM »
Lesley, thanks for persevering. We'll all get there eventually..... I hope!  I don't know quite what is happening with the uploads not taking several pix when, as you found out, it is happy to take the same one twice when you didn't really ask it to. I did get it to take two photos at once, as have others, so there MUST be a WAY. I just don't know WHY or HOW I managed to get the two pix ...... :-\
Thomas, we have been trying already with that "upload image button by the smileys... can't figure out WHAT it is meant to do.... I think Ian may be right... again..(tsk!).. we just haveto regard the whole exercise as a bit of fun while we get to grips with the new system.

I'm enjoying my virtual visit to Ray and Theo's place... I hope you will thank them for their hospitality on our behalf?
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Susan Band

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2006, 09:08:36 PM »
try after you attach the first pic,pressing the blue more attachments next to the browse button.
Ihad the same problem first.
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Ian Y

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2006, 09:51:04 PM »
Ok When you click 'Additional options' you get the Attach: box with the browse button to the right.
Clicking on the (more attachments) opens another browse box, the more you click the more boxes open, up to a maximium of 10 per post. You then browse each box and attach the pictures you want.
I hope that solves your problem Lesley.
And another great thing about this forum is I know you are there just now Lesley. ;)
« Last Edit: November 20, 2006, 09:56:52 PM by Ian Y »
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Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2006, 09:56:16 PM »
Susan, I did try the more attachments thing a couple of days ago and had no joy but will try again, having learned at least a couple of things in the meantime. (I just read these new posts and hopefully, everything will fall into place this time.)

I was taken to lunch one day at the relatively new Mahurangi vineyard near Matakana. So new infact that they are not yet serving their own wines in the restaurant there but from the nearby Matakana estate winery. Many of these are award winning and quite delicious.

Note from Ian Y: Don'tyou just love it when a plan comes together?
« Last Edit: December 10, 2009, 06:26:08 PM by Maggi Young »
Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

Lesley Cox

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Re: Short Holiday/A lesson in Northern Horticulture
« Reply #14 on: November 20, 2006, 10:16:13 PM »
Yeah and tally-ho! Nothing will stop me now!

These to follow are some reasonably hardy (for NZ) species but which certainly do better in the north. The Metrosideron excelsa (pohutakawa) is known as NZ Christmas tree because usually it flowers then, many ancient specimens in Northland and on the Coromandel Peninsula becoming great crimson beacons, overhanging steep cliffs on the coast. It tolerates salty gales. There are many new forms available including pinks, oranges and yellows and some species from the Pacific islands such as Tahiti and Hawaii are also grown in the north.


Lesley Cox - near Dunedin, lower east coast, South Island of New Zealand - Zone 9

 


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