Bonsai beauty … Linda, whose garden is one of 15 on the tour, with her 25-year-old Juniperus procumbens “Nana” bonsai tree growing out of a pumice rock. PHOTO: SHELLEY TOPP

By Robyn Bristow

Gardens, art and demonstrations at Leithfield and beyond on October 23 and 24 will help keep the pages turning at the Leithfield Library.

The community-owned Leithfield Public Library is hosting the Leithfield Garden tour as a fundraiser where people can stroll through gardens, visit artists studios, indulge in local eateries and food put on by local organisations, and discover Leithfield’s history.

It takes in 15 gardens of different sizes and styles, and will include demonstrations of kokedama, living vases and Bonsai.

The all-weather event starts at 10am each day and runs until 4pm. Maps will be issued for visitors which give the order of flow.

Artists include Stargirl, offering a houseplant and kokedama store, with Kokedama making throughout the day. Jax Pots sells decorative and functional ceramics and homewares, while Pure has oak wine barrel products and artwork for the home and garden. Magic Moss has sphagnum and decorative moss for all your garden needs, and will give living vase demonstrations and tours.

Locally produced soaps and balms will be available from Shardia MacKintosh, while Cee Dee Design will have handmade jewellery, knitted brooches and plants for sale. Jane Handmade features merino/alpaca mixed knits – beanies, snoods, headbands and more, while The Barn will offer Blackhills natural coloured hand knitting yarns and a knitwear collection.

There are historical homes, and the St Paul’s Anglican Church to view along the way, and the Leithfield Beach Fairy Forest to explore.

There will be tours offered at Harleston House, a limestone block home built in 1863 by the Ashworth family. Its garden has been lovingly re-established using plants of the period when the home was built. There are many surprises, including a secret garden.

Roses, natives, a potager garden, an abundance of spring flowers, and mature tree, oaks and a country garden.

The Sanctuary of Fourviere, a garden designed to tell the history of the Catholic Mission in the Pacific will also be open.

Entry is $25 for adults, seniors $15, kids under 15 are free. Tickets are on sale at Oderings Barrington, Sally Macs, Amberley, Woodend Nursery, Ouruhia Nursery, Pukeko Junction Gallery, Mobil Amberley and Terra Viva.

Go to the Leithfield Public Library Facebook page for more details and updates.