The Birch Walk - a sheltered environment for rhododendrons, maples, lilies and hostas. A huge Magnolia campbellii flowers behind in July and August.
The two sunken gardens, one made in the fifties by May as the setting for the statue "Spring" and the other in 1990 to compliment it, are planted with a mass of perennials in front of old brick walls.
Spring begins with drifts of chionodoxa, dark blue forget-me-nots and dog’s-tooth violets under deciduous trees. Flowering cherries, magnolias and dogwoods blossom, underplanted with fritillarias, peonies and early perennials. Masses of rhododendrons and azaleas brighten the green backdrop. Later, roses and lilies bloom throughout the garden, and summer perennials in the formal sunken gardens frame a central statue of “Spring”. Then in autumn pink Cyclamen hederifolium carpet the garden beneath the beautiful autumn foliage of notable copper beeches, maples, oaks, dogwoods and birches. A magnificent Magnolia campbellii flowers in winter, when camellias open. Belladonna lilies stud the entrance, adjacent to a memorable stand of kahikatea and over three hectares of woodland.
What People Say about the Ridges
"When a landscape has been husbanded for generations by one family, it seems to acquire a patina of serenity, of wellbeing. It's taken nearly 70 years to achieve the beauty of The Ridges. It's a testimony to the wisdom of the patient gardener."
Julie du Fresne in North and South
"One of the most notable gardens in the North Island is that of The Ridges." "Massive drifts and groups of one genus, mature magnolias, camellias, rhododendrons and azaleas make the garden quite breathtaking in spring, as it is in autumn when the cold air colours the deciduous trees."
Gardens of New Zealand by Barbara Mathews and Conon Fraser.