With spectacular gardens featuring beautiful and diverse plant collections, the Auckland Botanic Gardens has so much to offer for the whole family. Their team is passionate about connecting their visitors to the beauty and wonder of plants. With a specially thought-out children’s garden and an interactive children’s area in their visitor centre, a visit to the Botanic Gardens is a wonderful way to escape the busyness of day-to-day life, and connect with nature and the outdoors in a beautiful environment. A walk through the stunning gardens is a great way to burn off some energy too!
The passion: What inspired you to set up your business?
Unlike many cities in New Zealand, for the first 140 years of its life, Auckland was without botanic gardens. In the 1960s, lobbying form the Auckland Horticultural Council and the Royal NZ Institute of Horticulture resulted in the Auckland Regional Authority purchasing land for a botanic garden in Manurewa (before the land could be subdivided). Auckland Botanic Gardens opened to the public in 1982.
The launch: How did you start out in the beginning?
Paddocks were purchased beside state highway one and grazing cows were replaced with flower beds and plantings that now attract over 1 million visitors a year.
The innovation: What was the biggest breakthrough for you with your business?
Auckland Botanic Gardens has a unique purpose to not only connect people to the beauty and wonder of plants, but also to find the best plants for Auckland’s growing conditions. We trial plants over several years and find those that will thrive in Auckland. We have created an online database of recommended Plants for Auckland that gets about 30,000 website visits a month. We also care for and protect endangered and threatened native plants as well as rare plants from across the world.