Kakahu Garden is park-like garden with a predominance of English trees, rhododendrons and camellias. It covers 6 hectare (16 acres). A century-old avenue of English oaks leads to the homestead which sits comfortabley among the tall trees.
A grand old English Oak is the feature on the front lawn, believed to be one of the largest is New Zealand. Planted by the Studholme family in approximately 1896, this tree, the avenue of Oaks, a wonderful Copperbeech, and two large Lime Trees are a tribute to the family's foresight. It is recorded that these trees were bought at Suttons in England and brought out to New Zealand especially for the new homestead, which had not at that stage been built.
Other families have added different English trees over the years, as well as specimen of Weeping Oregons and a very well spread Thuropsis Dolabrata.
Since the Hargreaves took over the farm in 1924, the rhododendron garden has been developed, and in 1984 an extension was made to incorporate the pond and a large area of rhododendrons to be grown on to large sizes and sold to the instant gardener. This was a diversification due to the difficult farming times.
The Hazelnut Walk was planted very early on and Roland Clark has used some of the best of these for propogation. Bluebells, no doubt brought by the Studholmes, have naturalised beneath a plantation of Oregon pines, and a great variety of New Zealand native trees have established under the canopy of English trees which makes an interesting mixture.
Directions- From SH 1 Turn into SH 72 towards Geraldine at Winchester, then turn south into SH 79 before Geraldine. Turn left into Hanging Rock Road. Kakahu is 14 kms from Winchester, 12 kms from Geraldine.
The Hargreaves family purchased the property in 1924. Kakahu Angus Stud was founded by Kenneth Hugh Hargreaves in 1954 with Ngawaka and Elleton cows and bulls bought from the Dannevirke commercial pens. Gerald now is placing great emphasis on the carcass traits of his hardy NZ based herd. To this end, proven American bulls are being judiciously used to establish one of the most advanced Angus carcass herds in the country.
Today the farm, 1300 ha, carries 5000 composite ewes and 1600 hogget's and a total of 800 cattle including 350 Angus stud cows. A plantation of radiata pine covers 80 hectares and a nursery for mature rhododendrons provides a bit of diversification.
We are happy to arrange a tour of the farm, please check with us for a price.