GardenDrumNew Zealand’s Tree Church

Tree Church NZ Design Barry CoxA church ‘grown’ from alder trees by Barry Cox in Ohaupo, New Zealand, is the perfect way to venerate nature, or any god of your choosing.

Alnus glutinosa ‘Laciniata’ (cut leaf alder) trained over an iron frame forms the roof, its long, supple branches perfect for this style of espalier. The deciduous branches also allow light through during the winter to give the grass ‘carpet’ inside its necessary sunshine. Tightly trimmed shrubs of Leptospermum macrocarpum ‘Copper Sheen’ create thicker walls.

One rose decorates the front of the church – climbing Rosa ‘Dublin Bay’, chosen for its rich red blooms and long flowering period.

Barry Cox has been a student of church architecture for decades, carefully noting their proportions and the correct pitch and height of roofs and porticos. He planted the church trees in 2011.

Surrounding the church, topiary Norway maples (Acer platanoides) punctuate the surrounding Camellia ‘Black Tie’ hedge. The extensive 3 acres of surrounding gardens include a labyrinth, a birch walk, and many other beautiful trees.

The Tree Church and its gardens is open to visitors from October 18, 2015 to May 8, 2016 from 10am to 4pm on Sundays and Tuesdays. Entry $10pp. The church, which seats 100 people can be hired for weddings and events. More at Tree Church

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