Hamilton Gardens

Hamilton Gardens is the name given to the botanic gardens in Hamilton. It has rolling hills and trees and a stone-walled river and various buildings and venues for exhibitions and floristry classes and outdoor concerts. However, it also has a collection of "styled" gardens, as listed to the right.

These gardens are rather fascinating, and you can get the flavour of them from a few pictures. They are one of the top attractions if you visit here, along with the river walks, model trains, and of course, Bywater Grange. This is a Photo Exhibition for the likes of Danny Webster, your humble webmaster, and others who dream more of Kew Gardens than the Appalachian Trail.

The approach to the formal styled gardens is guarded by these patrons of the first recorded gardens in Egypt and Mesopotamia:

The Chinese Scholars Garden is not as large as the Chinese Gardens in Sydney, but seems to be modelled on the Emperor's Palace gardens in Beijing just the same.

The Japanese Garden:

I know little of Indian gardens, but the Indian Char Bagh seemed very Mahalesque. There is a good view of "the mighty Waikato" river through the arches at the end of this courtyard.

The Italian Renaissance Garden is my favourite. Good nooks and crannies (though no maze). Good place for a picnic lunch. Quite Portmeirionesque.

The English Flower Garden at first seemed... without a character of its own, after the bold styles like Indian and Chinese, but after a while the features soak in... walled with trees and hedges, emphatically green, and possessed of a naturalness that makes any man-made constrution a folly, even the wooden gates that appear in green barriers.

The American Modernist Garden captures American Modernism, and is indeed a garden, but it reeks of Frank Lloyd Wright (with a dash of Andy Warhol).

Outside the formal gardens listed above, there are some "styled" gardens dotted further afield. Below you can see a picture from the "Hispanic Garden" across the lake:

There is also a Victorian Garden up on the slopes of the hills leading back up to the main soutern road of Hamilton, and right at the peak there is a "Russian Bell tower":

There is a creditable approximation of an English castle moat half-surrounding the administrative buildings in the centre of the gardens: