Kenmare & District Garden Club

The May meeting was held in the Gateway Kenmare. The club was delighted to welcome Mark Collins of Dhu Varren gardens who gave us a highly informative talk entitled ‘Botanical Highlights of New Zealand’, based on his recent visit this year. Previousy held ideas of New Zealand being on a par with Ireland for climate were swiftly dismissed with temperatures now far higher and lower there, particularly on the northern island above Auckland, due to climate change. Indeed, the loss of biodiversity over the past 200 years of 95% is a grim figure, dogs and hedgehogs being prime suspects for the disappearance of the indigenous flightless wild life. It was very interesting that the trees and shrubs are all evergreen but with a huge variety of species in all shades of green and varying leaf size. The talk concluded with reference to the mighty Kauri trees, which can live for 2000 years, growing up to 50 m tall, and trunk girth of up to 50 m.European settlers since 1700 saw the decimation of these magnificent trees and the connecting biodiversity for timber, gum and clearance for farmland. Sadly too they are now affected by fungal disease but at least now the magnificent Kauri are a protected species, though regeneration will take years to achieve.
Next meeting: Thursday, June 1st : 6.45 p.m.: Tea, coffee and welcome, . 7.30p.m. prompt: Talk by Paul Smyth, plantsman, author and podcaster. Head gardener of RHSI, Bellfield, Shinrone. Co writer with Diarmuid Gavin of ‘Gardening Together’.
Meetings: First Thursday of the month, unless otherwise specified. Venue: The Gateway (beyond the Centra Garage heading on the Molls Gap/Killarney road, opposite the Brooklane Hotel grounds). Parking available. Non-members are very welcome (small fee)
Contact Stephen Austen: 0879112876 for further information if you are interested in becoming a member.