Community, Gardening

The Middle of Middle Earth – New Zealand

Windy Wellington is what they call it, for good reason. Although  a stunning day was served up for our afternoon arrival, the evening and next day had weather forecasts predicting 130km/hr winds northerly gale.  Well, Wellington is the only capital city located in the ‘Roaring Forties‘, so it  is hardly surprising.

New Zealand 12013

Still, a pretty stunning welcome from Wellington. I love that Aqua blue water, and there was no sign of plastic bottles and litter floating about the edges, which I see, all too frequently, in big cities. Mind you, Wellington is not a big city, by any stretch of the imagination with less than 400,00 people according to Wikipedia. But it is the capital city and the hub of the political sphere in NewZealand.

NormandaleNew Zealand 2013 411

How is this for a view from your living room window? This is what some of my family look out to every morning.

One of the first things I like to do, when I stay somewhere, is go for a walk in the local area. I guess I am a bit of a sticky beak, but I do like to see how others live and their surroundings. The houses, the streets, the people are all so interesting. Here are some pics from my walk in Whitby, a posher area, just outside Wellington city. Whitby is separated into 3 different areas, by the locals that live there. They call each of them ‘Richby, Ditchby and Shitby’, apparently. I was lucky I was staying in Richby, but did walk over to Ditchby which borders Shitby. The houses with the views below are part of Richby! I’ll leave ‘Shitby’ to your imagination.

Whitby New Zealand 2013

Imagine looking out to these hills every day of your life? They look as though a giant hand poured a whole lot of sugar/sand onto a plate and then rolled grass green fondant over the top shaping valleys in the folds of where the sand lay. Magical!

New Zealand 2013 414

We have “Tree ferns” in Australia, but there rarely get to the height one sees in New Zealand, in the sub-tropical climate where I normally live. Apparently, Kiwis call them “Ponga” trees. ( sounds like punga)

tree fern

Ponga is the Maori name for the native New Zealand tree fern. It was once a valuable source of food, building materials and weapons. The silver fern is well known as a national symbol, there are ten species of tree fern in New Zealand according to

Over the next two weeks, we found some stunning cool climate plants in and around Wellington. However, our first stop was a road trip up in Hastings and Napier in the North Island. But that is another story for me to write. Something I’ll ponder about tomorrow.


10 thoughts on “The Middle of Middle Earth – New Zealand”

  1. Those tree ferns are really fantastic – I took loads of photos…thank you for reminding and showing again how beautiful they are! We had one berautiful, sunny and windy day and one terribly rainy and windy day there. But I loved it. Interesting architecture too.


    1. Weather in Wellington and much of NZ is unpredictable. But with that unpredictability means that the rain may pass as quickly as it arrived. The wind there, can be something else…Scrapydo mentioned that the wind there was 120km/h a few days ago. I am glad I wasn’t flying in or sailing on a ferry to Wellington that day!!


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