Friday Milo and I went to Hagley park for a few hours, the big central park in Christchurch that sports extensive botanical gardens and a lovely section of spring daffodils growing under tall beech trees. Milo smells flowers by blowing on them. The gardens were a lovely way to spend the 4 hours we had to kill waiting for the hitch to be installed on the car.
This “cabbage tree” is a signature New Zealand plant. Doesn’t look much like a cabbage to me, but Maori used to dig up the roots, grind them, dry them and eat them. That was before Europeans brought potatoes which were much easier to cultivate, cook and store. When my NZ plant encyclopedia arrives with all our stuff I’ll learn the plant family to which it belongs. Somehow knowing the plant family makes the world seem friendly and familiar.
Along with the daffodils are rows and rows of blooming cherry trees. Spring flowers seem to last a long time here, a perk of the weather is still pretty cool still. I thought Jeremiah’s colleague was just out of touch 6 weeks ago when he said the daffodils would be peaking in about 6 weeks (they were already starting then), but he was right.
Will I ever get enough of these luxurious ferns? Probably not. I love the new baby fronds coming up. They’re enormous, it’s like a nest of dinosaur eggs.
Milo really appreciated all the New Zealand native plants neatly labeled in the botanical garden. He found the stroll very relaxing.