“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet”
So said Juliet to her Romeo sometime between 1591 and 1595 when it is believed that William Shakespeare wrote those words. Here at The Kauri Museum we have a living collection of more than 120 roses, many of them with the sweetest of scents, all of them named and no-one with a wish to change a thing!
The roses make up the Heritage Rose collection which can be enjoyed in the grounds around The Kauri Museum as well as in the gardens of Totara House, a heritage property close by. The first roses were planted in October 2012 as part of a collaboration between the Northland branch of Heritage Roses New Zealand and The Kauri Museum. At the museum, there are formal beds of shrub roses surrounded with box hedging and climbers trained on the tennis court fencing adjacent to the museum. Plantings at Totara House are more informal with the roses lining both sides of the driveway.
Keeping every plant looking as good as it should is a joint effort between museum volunteers, staff and members of Heritage Roses Northland. Regular working bees keep the roses pruned, sprayed, watered and mulched and right now, the result of all this work is a glorious display of blooms. If you have an interest in roses in general, or heritage roses in particular, head to Matakohe and spend some time sniffing the roses. If you see one that takes your fancy, the plants are all labelled, so then your only challenge is to find out where you can purchase your favourite! The rose enthusiast leading the project is Olga Yuretich of Wellsford who also happens to be the President of Heritage Roses New Zealand. If you have a question you can contact Olga on 09 423 7237 or visit www.heritageroses.org.nz
So…see you at Matakohe. Take a day off and make the trip, it’s worth the effort. There’s plenty to do and see here on the upper reaches of the mighty Kaipara Harbour.