New Zealand has a unique variety of native plants. These plants have been isolated from other parts of the world for millions of years, resulting in some very special characteristics.
One of those characteristics is the vigour and longevity that many of the native plants have. This vigour is also reflected in the flower essences produced from these plants.
Roses are one of the fastest growing categories of wine worldwide. Some are closer to white wines, while others are more akin to light reds. New Zealand has an impressive range of roses, all of which can be a wonderful addition to your garden.
Class Act is a hardy, frost-hardy rose that grows well in temperatures as low as -20 degrees. It can be planted in any area, although it’s best to give it a lot of sun and plenty of well-draining soil.
Paddy Stephens is a disease-resistant hybrid tea rose with beautiful orange-salmon blooms and dark green foliage. It’s a self-cleaning flower that takes minimal care and maintenance. It loves full sunlight but does need to be pruned during winter.
Tulips are a classic spring flower, and their flowers come in a range of shapes, sizes, colors and textures. They are a part of the lily family and they can be grown in a range of different soil types, but they thrive best in soils that are well drained.
The most important thing when growing tulips is to give them plenty of water. Never let the soil dry out, and don’t use an irrigation system as this can lead to fungus and disease.
Once planted they can be quite maintenance-free, but you may want to apply a liquid seaweed or organically-fortified product from time to time. A nutrient-rich bulb food will provide nutrients for growth and ensure that pests don’t take advantage of the blooms.
Edendale-based Triflor is New Zealand’s biggest tulip exporter. It grows, distributes and markets 15 types of tulip bulbs to the European market.
Chrysanthemums are one of the most popular flowering plants in New Zealand. They are easy to grow and produce long lasting flowers for use as garden plants or indoors in pots or containers.
The chrysanthemum is one of the world’s oldest flowering plants and originated in China. By 365 AD a bustling centre of cultivation called Chuchsien had been established and the wild chrysanthemum species were crossed with Chinese cultivars creating a huge variety.
Various species, cultivars and hybrids have been introduced into the western world. Some of the best are derived from China’s hardy species and Japanese cultivars.
Chrysanthemums thrive in rich, moist, fertile soils with good air circulation and plenty of sun. They do well in a position away from harsh or drying winds, but they can also tolerate a partial shade spot.
Orchids are a truly unique group of flowers that have an incredible diversity, intrigue and beauty. Some orchids only flower for a single day, others last a year and many have specialised strategies to attract pollinators.
Some even mimic the pheromones of the insects they want to attract. The pheromones of the parasitic wasp, Cryptostylis ovata, for example, can be induced by a particular species of orchid called Slipper Orchid.
Some of the more exotic looking NZ flowers include the Masdevallias and Blue Orchids. Both require a well drained soil that doesn’t dry out too quickly. Orchids don’t like cold weather and prefer a warm environment with plenty of sunlight.