Waikato Home and Garden show

Waikato Home and Garden show -  October 2015 - Rukuhia Homestead Landscaping created one of the feature landscaped sites at the recent waikato home and garden show in october 2015. The themed site was based on a japanes style garden - and included a  large bonsai cedar (CEDRUS DEODAR AUREA  - it can be seen in the main photo) that Graeme has been nurturing and training  for 45 years. It now stands pride of place in Graeme and Vals garden at the Rukuhia Homestead.

Also  included in Graeme and his wife Vals site was a bamboo waterfeature (deer scarer type)  that go click clack as it fulls with water and drops it to make a noise and scare the deer away in japan. The children visiting the show were certainly impressed with water features constant movement and noise of splashing water.

Other plants we  included on the site were PRUNUS AWANUI - soft pink flowering cherry ACER MIKAWA YATSUBUSA - bonsai maple  - 15yr old specimen in a traditional low rectangle bonsai teracotta pot LIGULARIA REGIFORMUS - tractor seat plant WISTARIA SINENSIS - trained as a  topiary standard in a pot FRUITING PEAR TREE - trained as an espaliered specimen for a wall/fenceline PODOCARPUS HENKLEII  - a beautifully graceful member of the totara family that  makes a very cool looking hedge or backdrop to a garden.

OPHIOPOGEN JAPONICA NIGRA - black mondo grass - looks very cool amongst stone paving JUNIPERUS KAIZUKA - trained as topiary clouds - the specimen had its branches trained horizontally and had been in the same pot for 15yrs.

ACER TAMEUKEYAMA -  a beautiful three stemmed crafted specimen with each stem being of a different height and each having red weeping branching coming from the top - very very cool for someone wanting a feature plant thats very different, we certainly had very positive feedback about the Japanese style garden and uniquness of some of the plants. Our whole purpose of creating this site was to inspire homeowners and show them some interesting  garden style basing it on a Japanese sort of influence.


Mediterranean Panache at the 30th Waikato Home & Garden Show

Retreat to the Mediterranean.

The Home Show has its very own Mediterranean Garden. Come and enjoy the beauty and elements that have gone into creating this special environment, with its contrast of bright colours, earthy hues and plant species that are resilient to drier climates. Mediterranean gardens have a summery feel, which is why landscape designer Graeme Burton of Rukuhia Homestead Landscaping chose this style. It suits the Waikato’s long, dry summers. Graeme and his wife Valerie Glenn of Clever Design have teamed up to create this landscape spectacle in the Arena Pavilion.

Graeme is from a well-known horticultural family in the Waikato. His father John Burton, a leading plant retailer during the 1970/1980s, established a household name in gardening in the region. Having been in the nursery industry for 35 years Graeme has a thorough grounding in what makes plants perform and what situation suits them best. He has earned a reputation for his creative flair in putting together different plant combinations and innovative landscape ideas.

With over 20 years experience in event décor and concept design, Valerie brings a complementary set of skills to the team. She is an award-winning designer who has won acclaim at the Ellerslie Flower Show. Let yourself be transported to the Mediterranean and be inspired by the creative garden design of these two leading professionals. See you at the Home Show!


A Garden Visit with a difference

Is your garden group looking for somewhere really exciting to visit this coming November/December?  Then you should certainly book in a visit to our garden expo.       

The expo includes an informative talk and slide show outlining the highlights of my recent trip to Europe and the UK.  The visit will take in :

  • the Chelsea Flower Show
  • some of the grand gardens in England
  • the Floriade Horticultural World Expo - the biggest horticultural show in the world which is held in Holland once every ten years
  • Claude Monet’s Famous Garden in Giverney, France
  • the world famous Garden of Versailles, created in 1641

You will also see some of the best new plants to come onto the NZ market in the last 12 months and learn how to use them in your garden.  You will be the first to see the latest plants in my new topiary range -  under the brand Topiary Different® - they have all been crafted personally by me, something very new and exciting for the NZ garden market.

This is followed by a guided tour of the established Rukuhia Homestead Gardens and devonshire tea.  

Read more about the day in the attached flyer.

I PERSONALLY GUARANTEE that you will find the visit very inspirational and you will go away really keen to put some of the ideas and plants into your very own garden.To book email Graeme on :


Katikati Wildflowers Garden Group visit November 2011

On behalf of the Katikati Wildflowers Garden Group I would like to thank you and Val so much for our visit to your garden last Saturday. We all agreed it was an absolute highlight to our gardening year in 2011.

The Devonshire Tea, the most informative and interesting talk, and the garden tour were all first class. We all came away well nourished, enlightened and inspired. We shall certainly be interested in your programme for next year.

Kind regards

Trish Mines
Katikati Wildflowers

The Budding Company Tauranga visit February 2011

HI Graeme and Val

Our garden group would like to thank you for the exciting morning we had at Rukuhia. What you offered was fantastic and everyone was buzzing afterwards with enthusiasm. Our garden group is based in Tauranga and loved the trip over the Kaimais to the Waikato. Your talks gave real value to our excursion and Graeme's plant knowledge is very extensive. The garden settings were inspiring and creative and the scones and coffee were also very welcome. We would recommend any garden minded group to visit.

The Budding Company

Putararu Garden Group visit February 2011

The car load I travelled home with declared it was best ever garden circle outing. Our Club President, Joyce, rang me this morning also echoing what a great day it was.

Our Club thoroughly enjoyed every minute visiting the gardens of Rukuhia Homestead. Graeme’s years of experience was evident as he endlessly shared his knowledge and tips and advice. The hospitality was superb, Val’s morning devonshire tea just hit the spot for a great start to our visit. Looking at the gardens was great! The Learning was even better. Thank you

Thank you again. There’s plenty of enthusiasm to come visit again sometime

Waotu-Puketurua Garden Group

Irene's Garden group visit

I was very excited, in anticipation of our group of mature dedicated gardeners visit to Graeme and Val's Rukuhia Homestead Garden. While we were treated to a sophisicated morning tea, Graeme gave us a brief on his garden principles.

We were escorted around each 'themed' area observing the appropriate companion plantings, in some cases quite simple but very effective. The importance of feeding plants was emphasised on many occasions and that was very evident, healthy plants don't need spraying. I

t was the clever use of plant material that gave the garden the 'Wow' look. This was a very informative and enjoyable visit to Graeme and Val's place of pride. I know this group left 'buzzing' with enthusiasm and eager to invite Graeme to their own place for more inspirations. Well worth a visit.

Irene's Garden Group

Horsham Downs Garden Club visit

Hi Graeme

The Horsham Downs Garden Club ladies enjoyed our garden tour and afternoon tea at Rukuhia Homestead garden. We were very impressed with Graeme’s plant knowledge and inspiring tour of his different garden rooms. A few of the best tips we have taken away with us were to pick the right plant for the right place ,to fertilize and to buy the best possible potting mix. We were surprised at how quickly our enjoyable afternoon passed by and would recommend other garden clubs visiting this garden.

The secretary Horsham Downs Garden Club

Tirau Garden Group visit - Nov 2010

Thank you Graeme & Val. Our group thoroughly enjoyed your garden and talk.

Our Tirau gardening group of 22 ladies visited the Rukuhia Homestead Garden in mid-November.

Graeme led the garden tour and gave us an extensive and knowledgeable talk on plant combinations
for various garden areas. Val then provided mouth-watering scones, cream and jams, plus sandwiches, served with tea and coffee in fine bone china cups (seldom seen today).

During this time, Graeme chatted about the value of manure -- when and where to use it. This was a most informative and interesting visit and enjoyed by all.


Raewyn and Ruth

Fun'n Flowers - Oct 2010

Margaret's review:

Our garden group (Fun 'n Flowers, from Tamahere) thoroughly enjoyed our visit to The Rukuhia Homestead. Graeme truly proved to be an experienced, knowledgeable plants man and landscaper.

After a delicious morning tea, our group listened and learned as he guided us around his garden, talking as he went about the various plantings -- unlike other garden visits, where we didn’t get this learning experience. Graeme is able to source excellent plant varieties, which he knows how to use in different garden situations. After all, we all have places around our garden which can be added to or improved upon. Plants can outgrow their location very quickly in the Waikato.

Graeme rekindled our enthusiasm and passion for gardening. We all fully appreciated his time and efforts in accommodating our visit.

Tamahere Garden Club Visit - Nov 2010

On behalf of the Tamahere Garden Club, I would like to thank Graeme & Val Burton for a most enjoyable and informative morning at their inspiring and thought provoking garden. We were greeted with a delicious morning tea, and then Graeme spent two hours showing us around their garden, and sharing his extensive knowledge of plants and the right situations where plants would flourish. Graeme was so willing to answer our questions. We found the morning inspiring. We came away with an added incentive on how to nurture and care for our own gardens. Regards, Carolyn Ingram.

Arrange a Visit

The Rukuhia Homestead gardens are not open to the public to visit on a casual basis.

People interested can contact Graemeto find out further details.

Admission is either by:

  1. Being a landscape client of Graeme's
  2. Being involved in a garden group, where a tour of the gardens is pre-arranged with Graeme.

A charge will apply, but included in this will be a guided tour and an informative talk by Graeme, where he will impart many of his ideas/thoughts from the 35 years he has been involved in the New Zealand nursery industry.

Graeme Burton - Landscaper - Rukuhia Homestead, RD2, Ohaupo 3882
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