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Mona Vale Garden Staff Walk

19 September 2007

The Brave New World of Garden Heritage

In 1967 Christchurch residents raised $55,000 to save Mona Vale Garden from being ploughed into a sub-division.

Next week, staff at Mona Vale will offer a guided tour of the historic gardens, a one-off event steeped in history and beauty.

Mona Vale Coordinator Angus Allan will take visitors walkabout from 12.10 pm to 1 pm on Tuesday September 25. The remarkable Rose Gardens will be the start point of the walk.

"The focus will be on the history of the planting, who planted what and when, and where to go from here now," says Mr Allan.

Mr Allan will talk the walk and engage visitors with his keen knowledge of the English and European trees, rhododendrons, camellias, conifers and maples dating back to early last century.

More recently, magnolias, many ericaceae, herbaceous perennials and beds of annuals have been added and Mr Allan has looked at a number of plantings to further enhance the Garden.

"We have done the research and we know where we are heading. I will be talking on what  we are doing to highlight the Heritage Garden Values of the property," he says of the Tuesday walk.

The one-off staff walk offers the opportunity to delve in the history and beauty of the plantings; some dating back to the turn of the last century, most in 50 to 80 year bracket.

Mona Vale  - purchased by the civic fundraising and the Christchurch City Council for $134,600 -  also features a restored Fernery (built at the time of the 1906 Christchurch World Exhibition), a Gazebo on the Weymouth Lawn with a copper onion-domed roof and stained glass windows, the beautiful Iris Garden and, of course, the celebrated Rose Garden.

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