Taranaki Garden Run 2021

This year the weekend was held on the 29th – 31st October. We had 16 registered for the run, all but 1 couple including Michael and I stayed at the Auto Lodge. Unfortunately, due to COVID and boundary restrictions we had others who could not make it from up North.

Friday night we all met at The Eliot Café and Bar for dinner and catch up. An excellent meal was enjoyed by all with everybody enjoying each other’s company and getting ready for the busy day ahead on Saturday.

Saturday morning, we all met at the Auto Lodge car park at 8.45 am, ready for the start of the day, Raewynn gave a safety briefing and instructions for the day were handed out. We left the Auto Lodge at 9.15 am.

Our first stop for the day was Pukeiti about ½ drive up Carrington Road under the Mountain. Pukeiti has been built up over seven decades to be one of the world’s biggest and most distinct collections of rhododendrons and other exotics, their rich colours bursting into life against a backdrop of lush native rainforest. We spent an hour at Pukeiti, some people walking for miles others stopping for a coffee at the Café everybody had a great time. Michael led some of the girls astray, they only had time to grab a takeaway coffee.

Our Next stop was Stony River Pottery, after a slight hiccup in the instructions (oops) we all managed to find the place, we were looking for. The garden has been developed over the last 40 years with the biggest Avocado tree laden in fruit that I had ever seen. The Villa homestead was built in 1904. There were also interesting stands of bamboo. The pottery showroom is in this restful and tranquil garden.

From here we proceeded to our lunch stop at Pihama Lavender. We enjoyed a great picnic lunch which was paid for by the club which consisted of subway sandwiches, fruit and tea and coffee. The Lavender Farm is a working farm in the historic dairy factory and is almost 6 acres. It includes an indoor fernery, a Mediterranean courtyard and river walks. The garden uses permaculture principles. People took the opportunity to take photos of the lined-up Wolseley’s. The Mountain was really showing its beauty and there were a few beautiful photos taken by some.

We then travelled back to Koru on Koru Sculpture Garden and Gallery. This location is situated in the old Koru Village celebrates contemporary art in a purpose-built studio situated amongst a warm and cheerful cottage garden.

From here it was decided that we would head back to our accommodation to have a rest and recharge for the evening. We then re-grouped at 5.30 pm at Julianna’s restaurant at the Auto Lodge for pre-dinner drinks. 6.30 pm we were seated for our meal. A Christmas theme at the table with Christmas Cracker, great service and a lovely menu designed for the Wolseley Car Club.

The night was made extra special with presentations of club trophies. These included Most Enthusiastic Member -which was won by Murray and Sue Bethell.

Unfortunately due to COVID restrictions the Bethell’s were unable to make the run, Winton will ensure that they receive their trophy.

Certificate of Recognition went to Larry and Glenys Naik

A new trophy donated by Winton and Ruth Cleal – People’s Choice went to Larry and Glenys Naik.

Loris Whitcombe then reminded the group of a few blubbers that happened during the weekend. This was quite entertaining with Bronwyn causing the most mayhem, mm she blamed the driver for not listening to the Navigator.

Sunday Morning, we met again at 9.30 am to hold our AGM which was cancelled earlier in the year due to COVID restrictions, then most people departed for home.
A great weekend, good company and fellowship. Looking forward to the next adventures.

Raewynn and Michael Kruse

Last Updated November, 2021