Oamaru Public Gardens has been awarded a 5 Star 'Garden of National Significance' rating.
After a thorough on-site assessment late last year and a peer-reviewed report, assessors from the New Zealand Garden Trust have awarded Oamaru Public Gardens a 5 star rating, congratulating the Waitaki District Council's Parks & Recreation team on a "truly impressive result".
Oamaru Public Gardens, established in 1876 is among the oldest in New Zealand and has captivated and charmed visitors for over a century. It is one of four Gardens in New Zealand moving up from a 4 to a 5 star ranking this year.
Lead Assessor Jan Woodhouse said: "It is such a privilege for us to visit gardens that are clearly the result of hours of work by passionate, creative and knowledgeable people and we come away inspired and indeed humbled by our experiences."
Gardens are assessed on hard landscaping and planting design, as well as horticultural maintenance, visitor experience and 'WOW' factor. In assessing Oamaru Public Gardens, the Trust particularly praised the range of open and enclosed spaces with the wide variety of plants and amenity to visitors, the high level of maintenance and the on-going planting and development.
Chair of the Assets Committee, Cr Bill Kingan said, "The Oamaru Gardens have always had a great reputation. This award confirms that. Congratulations to all those who are involved in maintaining and enhancing a wonderful asset."
Waitaki District Council Parks officer Jane Matchett said, "We're very pleased with this rating, especially as Downers have made a commitment to improve the environment for butterfly populations and beautify the Oamaru Creek."