Top 10 reasons to visit Ellerslie Flower Show
The 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show opens next week at the Auckland Regional Botanic Gardens in Manukau City. The show is open to the public daily from 10am from November 24-28 (the opening gala on November 23 is sold out). Advance tickets are on sale now at Ticketek, with gate sales throughout during show week.
Visitor research shows that 46% of the show's annual 70,000 visitors come from outside the Auckland region, with 6% travelling from the South Island. For more information, visit http://www.ellerslieflowershow.co.nz.
The giant Roman arch under construction in the Celebration Garden at the 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show, which opens in Auckland next week.
Top 10 reasons to visit the 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show
1. A Taste of
Don't miss your chance to experience the historic New Zealand garden that stole the show in London. New Zealand's Gold medal-winning garden from the 2004 Chelsea Flower Show was singled out for a special private tour by Queen Elizabeth II - and now Kiwi gardeners can also see why it got the royal seal of approval.
The garden, known as '100% Pure NZ Ora Garden of Well-Being', has been recreated in a quiet grove of mature totara trees at the show.
Bigger is Better
You'll be blown away by the largest outdoor garden ever seen at a Southern Hemisphere gardening show. To mark the show's 10th Anniversary, a special 1200-sqm Celebration Garden takes showgoers on a time warp from ancient Rome to contemporary Auckland.
The Celebration Garden - and everything in it - is on a scale never before seen at Ellerslie. Designed by Hamilton landscaper Murray Lye and proudly sponsored by Pacific Retail Finance, it has three towering copper water features and a 6-metre high, 12-metre long Romanesque Triumphal Arch crafted by the set designers from Lord of the Rings.
What's Hot & What's Not
Worried that your paua water feature is passe or that your hostas are no longer hip? With more than 40 designer gardens on display, the 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show is a one stop shop for all the latest landscaping looks.
The Sunday Star-Times Exhibition Gardens include designer spaces for small faces, with two children's adventure gardens; a low-allergy garden created by Xanthe White from TV's Ultimate Garden; a contemporary outdoor kitchen; a Pacific artist's garden; spectacular water features; soundscapes, secluded oases, stylish urban retreats and sumptuous subtropical courtyards.
4. Art Out There
The Ellerslie Flower Show is honoured to host New Zealand's largest garden art exhibition. Art Out There is curated by the Waiheke Community Art Gallery and features the work of more than 50 leading New Zealand sculptors in a custom-designed garden gallery. From whimsical ceramic follies to towering totems, shiny steel sculptures and elegant glass works, Art Out There is the perfect place to kickstart your art collection. Exhibiting artists include Matt McLean, Jenny McLeod, John Papas, David Carson, Para Matchitt, Philip Luxton, Jenny Shearer, Jeff Thomson and Garth Dobney.
5. Ask the
Are you a DIY disaster? Hone your skills in the Bunnings DIY Demonstrations area, or learn from local and international experts in the NZ Gardener Speaker Series and the Green Shed Speaker's Corner. Find out how to: add value to your home with a landscaped garden; start a worm farm; garden without chemicals; create stunning floral arrangements; raise chooks in the city; plant perfect; design foliage gardens with flair and keep your tools in top condition. International experts and celebrity gardeners from the UK, USA and Australia also share their insights.
6. Light up the night
For the first time, the Ellerslie Flower Show is opening late to showcase innovative lighting effects for contemporary gardens. From fibreoptics to fairy lights, you'll be amazed by the range of spectacular lighting solutions available to turn gloomy gardens into gorgeous settings after dark. Buy a special twilight ticket and visit the show after work on Friday 26 November or plan a night out on Saturday 27 November. Twilight tickets are valid from 4pm until 10pm.
7. And all
Internationally-acclaimed jazz musician Nathan Haines performs four free concerts by the lakeside at the 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show. As well as performing for VIP guests at the sell-out gala evening, the Nathan Haines Quintet plays concerts at 7.30pm on Friday 26 November and Saturday 27 November, and at 3pm on Sunday 28 November.
Haines will be joined on stage by his bass-playing father Kevin and guitarist brother Joel, top jazz pianist Kevin Field and ex-pat Canadian drummer, Ron Samsom to perform vocal-led acoustic jazz.
What do you get when you mix New Zealand's top fashion designers with leading florists and floral art societies? A blooming extravaganza in the Floral Marquee. The Ellerslie Flower Show has signed a three year alliance with Fashion Industry NZ that sees leading designers create a one-off garment for florists to interpret in flowers instead of fabric. This year's theme is 'Brilliance'.
Hit the shops
Make a start on your Christmas gift lists and shop til you drop! The Shoppers, Growers and Gardeners Markets boast more than 130 specialist retailers offering everything from environmentally-friendly lawn mowers to elegant outdoor furniture and funky garden art. Gifts, gadgets, gourmet goodies, gorgeous plants and groovy gardening accessories - they're all for sale at the 10th Anniversary Ellerslie Flower Show.
10. Family fun
Pack a picnic, bring the kids and enjoy a fun day out for all the family. The Ellerslie Flower Show is child-friendly with free fun bags, free face painting, a free children's theatre and free admission for the under 5s. Children aged 5-14 pay just $5 and family passes for two adults and two children are $75.