Abbotsford Gardens

No stranger to garden tours, Penelope and Tim Bunny enjoy visiting beautiful gardens as much as tending their own near the rural township of Tauweru.

The gardens surround the historic Abbotsford Homestead. Built in 1865 it was used as an accommodation point for horse traffic between Masterton and Castlepoint.

57 Abbotsford Road

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Home to the Bunny family for the last 49 years, the gardens have been lovingly developed in tune with the natural landscape. Penny draws inspiration from the surrounding countryside.

She says linking the garden with its landscape provides a sense of settled peace. Calm is achieved through this strength of scale and repetition.

The trees in the distance, the surrounding hills, paddocks, gullies and wonderful light enhance the sense of seasons passing, colours changing.

At Abbotsford you won’t find immaculate bursting borders, more a laid-back ambience. Wander the cherry tree avenue out into a paddock of oaks to admire the view down the valley.

Closer to the house enjoy Penny’s propagated perennials – colours and layers beneath established mature trees. For many years she and Tim ran a plant nursery. They’re winding this down now but Penny will have a few of her favourite varieties for sale (cash only).

Throughout the garden you’ll notice elegant sculptures: a tall vase like fountain, Indonesian figurines, and others from Africa.

When Pūkaha first embarked on a fundraising garden tour – almost 10 years ago, Penny was at the helm. We’re so grateful she and Tim have agreed to come out of retirement to share Abbotsford once again to support Pūkaha on the 2019 tour.