THE DISCOVERERS GARDEN
Te Wao Nui a Tane
Providing a home for many of Northland’s
interesting wild plants.
This peaceful and flourishing Discoverers’ Garden, adjacent to Rewa’s Village and just across from Kerikeri’s famous Stone Store, has had more than 20,000 visitors since it opened 18 months ago.
The garden was planted as a millenium project, funded by the Society for the Preservation of the Kerikeri Stone Store Area.
Preparation of the site was begun in October 1999 and planting carried out in early 2000 when it was opened to the public.
The garden was seen as being a historical tribute to a thousand years of plant use, first by Maori then Europeans.
The job of overseeing the development and ongoing care was taken on by Kerikeri resident Brian Proudley, originally from England. Brian was formerly a nurseryman and author of 7 books on horticulture.
The garden now has more than 250 plants, shrubs, trees and ferns and is constantly being added to as more rare or interesting ones are either discovered or donated.
Although Maori had named many of the plants found here, they were first scientifically named with the arrival of Captain Cook in NZ waters on the Endeavour.
On board were the noted amateur naturalist Joseph Banks (later Sir Joseph) and the eminent botanist Dr Daniel Solander, and a number of artists, who found and gave botanical names to many of the plants growing in the Discoverers’ Garden.
Two of the plants in the garden, the Kerikeri Daisy and a hebe were discovered growing at Rainbow Falls, while one plant, the Pennantia baylisiana, found on Three Kings Islands, supposedly the rarest plant in the world, is flourishing in its new environment.
The Discoverers Garden is a delightful walk, of historical and educational value and well worth a visit.