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My Blog


The Best Park in Hastings

The Park in Mahora has some very nice plants.  Particularly because Hastings is Sister City to Guilin in China. As a gift to Hastings, the Guilin city Council  gifted Hastings with a Chinese style garden.

Even the entrance wall is promising.

The first plants to greet you when entering are black bamboos off the PHYLLOSTACHUS NIGRA family.

This is a stone from Guilin.  It is limestone.  The rains have dissolved away portions of the rock.  I first thought it was a meteorite.

A pavilion built by Guilin craftsmen.

Visiting my Sister

Near Papamoa, My sister Diana and brother in law Mike have a property.  When I visited, I took a present.  A plant.

They love trees and have enough land to have a few.  Here are a couple of Kauris.

Here are a couple of young Rimu.

This foto of their young dog shows the part of the property that looks towed the east.  There are poplars on the boundary.

The plant I brought was a bamboo, "Dendrocalamus Latiflora".  It is one of the largest bamboos to be found in New Zealand.

Bamboo Society

I belong to one of the most amazing societies.  It is called the New Zealand Bamboo Society.  

The members are people who have not got anything better to do than hang around and talk.  Which we do when we a working on projects together.  

Here are we working on a contraption. [I am on the right]

  We are attempting to tie two bamboos together.  We get quite good at it after ten tries or so.

This is the contraption we were working on.  It is made of bamboo we cut from a grove of "Phyllostachus Henonis"   [which technically is a cultivar of P.

Gazebo for a Wedding

Bamboo is an exciting material for construction.  When new it has a most wonderful look.  It does tend to age badly outdoors, but indoors it can last a long time.

A Wedding Gazebo, however, is not going to be put up for more than a day.  Perfect for bamboo.

Here is a foto of a wedding gazebo I made recently for someone I know well.

The bamboo poles are made from large culms of Henonis, which is the largest bamboo to be found in Hawkes Bay.  They have been partially covered [draped] with a fine white cloth.

Making things from Bamboo

Just recently a class from Taikura Steiner School has been doing a craft "Week"  for three weeks.  I had six students, who made dogwhistles,bamboo pipes and even turned a pipe from wood. They made pencil holders out of larger bamboo, and then began constructing models out of slivers of bamboo. 

These fotos are of the results of their work.

Two small dog whistles with pyrografic decorations.  We had four burning tips available, so each student could spend a lot of time on the pyrograf.

Caring for a bamboo hedge

Usually, a bamboo hedge in New Zealand, is allowed to grow without care for years.  My brother lives in Coromandel on a property that has a 300m long hedge of Bambusa Oldhamii that has not been cared for at all for its many years of existence.

People have come and taken bamboo from the hedge.  They cut the culms about 50cm from the ground, leaving a stubble that can't be walked through or over.

The hedge fills up with the dead branches that drop off the dying culms.  The dying culms start to rot at the bottom and start to fall over but are prevented by the living culms.

Double Pipe

My Grandson is nine.  His Birthday is in a few days so I am making him a double pipe.......    a pipe with a drone attached.  Out of Bamboo of course!!!!

Another view shows the fipples.

Now that the pipe is out of the clamps, I have been able to try it out.  It works beautifully.  You can adjust your mouth to cover one or the other or both to varying degrees of pressure.  You can get a whole scale of overtones on the long pipe.  EEEEEEERY, but very nice.  Like a wind chime.

My big trip south I

Last week I returned from a big trip SOUTH. The first part of the trip was to Nelson and Takaka.  I camped on a farm where all the other members coming to the weekend were gathered. We had a wonderful evening around the fire.  

Next day we went to a farmlet on the side of a hill on very strong limestone soil.  There was a cave in the rock for cellaring the wines grown on the small vineyard.  There was a grove of Moso.  Here a foto.

The culms are still rather small.  Most can grow to twice this size.


Recently I returned home to find the most beautiful rainbow over the neighbors house.  So I am sharing it with you. 

Guess the bamboo!

Here are some recent fotos of bamboos growing at  a property in Galatea.  The growing conditions are ideal for running bamboos, but some clumping bamboos would feel the frosts strongly and can die as a result.   The bamboo fotos are numbered.  

Send me an email if you know which bamboo it is in any foto.


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