Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Reading the daily doggy newspaper

When visiting Roland's Wood I met Michelle who was there with her dog Toby - they feature on the Walkies page - and I was taken with Michelle's comment "Oh, yes, I bring Toby here all the time, he loves to come and read the daily doggy newspaper!", which is exactly what dogs do, checking things out and catching up with all the various canine comings and goings...

Thanks, Starsha, for your great photos of  Summer, Ally and Snowy enjoying the woods - I've added them to the Walkies page - and here is Summer in a regal pose, sitting on the bench donated by Nancy Pickmere, a long time friend and supporter of Roland's.  The plaque beneath reads : 

Roland loved dogs and in giving this park
to the people of Kerikeri
he wished a safe place for dogs and people.
Donated by Nancy Pickmere 2010

Faith's photos

After the piece in the Bay Chronicle on 10th January about Roland's Wood a couple of people contacted me with photos which was GREAT - here are some beauties from Faith Donovan - one of the many people who have been enraptured by the bluebells and the apple blossom in springtime...


Thanks, Faith, for sharing these.

University of Oxford Harcourt Arboretum blog

When exploring some "tree sites" online, I came across this newly established blog for the University of Oxford Harcourt Arboretum which has the tagline Enhancing the discovery, understanding and appreciation of nature since 1621

Though Roland's Wood is a woodland rather than an arboretum, it felt like a link across to the other side of the world as our blog was just newly set up too - you've heard of sister cities, well, this felt like a sister blog, especially with the post mentioning hard working teams busily mulching !

I've put a comment on one of their posts, and invited interested visitors to make a virtual visit to Roland's Wood and will keep an eye on the traffic to see if we get connections happening through the ether!

Magnolias and Oswald Blumhardt

Though early spring is the time to see magnolias in flower, in my own garden and at Roland's Wood, some magnolias have surprisingly put on a second flush of flowers.

The magnolias at Roland's Wood are some of the earliest cultivars developed by Ozzie Blumhardt, a  renowned Northland plant breeder, specialising in magnolias and camellias.  Roland visited his nursery at Pakaraka and purchased newly developed cultivars for the Wood, including the now world famous Magnolia Star Wars - Roland was one of Ozzie's earliest clients.

See more information about Ozzie Blumhardt in this well-reviewed book :

Oswald Blumhardt  New Zealand Plant Pioneer
by Catherine Ballard, published by David Ling, distributed by David Bateman

Here is a full and useful review by Murray Dawson from the Royal New Zealand Institute of Horticulture New Zealand Garden Journal, 10(1), 2007, Page 26

and click here for a link on Flickr of some intricate close up images of  a Star Wars magnolia flower by Kam Hong Leung as part of a photo competition at Kew Gardens.