The Garden

Flaxmere Garden is a garden for all seasons, and has been sculptured from very simple beginnings since 1966 . A spring fed creek inspired a vision that has lead to dreams being fulfilled.

At 300 meters above sea level, close to the Southern Alps situated on terraced riverbed country, hot dry summers, cold winters and strong seasonal North West winds are normal.

This is a large country garden, based on the principles of strong design, which is completely in tune with the river bed country the garden is part of. The point of difference, are vistas that have been described as art forms. Immense use of water, creating a series of five ponds, gives a sense of enormous peace, and ensures wonderful bird life. Heavy old bridge timbers have been used and stone walls have been built over the years which add to the country style. This is a garden that has most things, formal, informal, woodland, natives, roses, rhododendrons and water. There is a large section of native plants indigenous to this area which is creating great interest View Map

The Gardener

Flaxmere is the creation of Penny Zino, who simply loves living amongst her trees and plants. The joy of every day is reflected in her passion for gardening and dreaming up the next project! She loves seeing people who share the same interest.


Garden Details

128 Westenras Road Hawarden, Canterbury. Flaxmere is situated on the Lake Summer Road, ten kilometres from the local village of Hawarden in North Canterbury, just over an hour to drive from Christchurch. The garden is signposted from Hawarden.
03 314 4504
03 314 4493
Contact Person
Penny Zino
Open by appointment only.
Garden Size
7 acres of ever-changing vistas & themes, Recommended visit of 2-3 Hours
Adults $15.00 , Children under 12 are free ,Groups over 15 or more $12.00 Hot and cold water supplied.
Brochure Available?
Buses/Coaches and cars, are able to park in the car park off the drive as indicated.
Toilets available.
Food Available
Morning and afternoon tea, as well as lunch can also be provided with prior arrangement.
Yes there seating around the garden.
Picnics allowed
Wheelchair Access
Dogs Allowed
No dogs please.
Children Allowed
Yes but please supervise.
A cottage is available for rent to those wishing to relax within the magical gardens of Flaxmere, or those wishing to have space to prepare for, and celebrate on that special day.

Flaxmere's Cottage is wonderfully set on the edge of a pond within the garden and presents:

2 bedrooms, with room to sleep 4
Open plan kitchen dinning and livingroom
Wood burner
Private bathroom
Sunny veranda with outside table and chairs
Flaxmere is close to superb fishing on the Hurunui River and is only 1 hour from Christchurch International Airport.

We would love you to come and enjoy the absolute quietness of this beautiful part of the world to gain a sense of peace amongst the wonderful bird life.
Weddings at Flaxmere are a real joy.

You are spoilt for choice for a location within the garden, different areas offering wonderful opportunities to create your own exclusive

It is a photographer’s dream, vistas of countryside complete with rustic gates, an arched bridge, brick pathways, stone walls and flowers to suit the seasons.

This is a venue where you can use all your creative talents to make this day your own, amongst Idyllic surroundings with stunning mountainous backdrops.

Whether it be a small intimate wedding or a large gathering, Flaxmere can cater for all occasions.
Plants/Other Sales
There is a small nursery from which you are welcome to purchase plants.
Guided Tours
Owner/creator available for guided tours on request at extra cost.
Function Center Available?
We are available for events.
Other Facilities

Art in a Garden is an annual exhibition held towards the end of October /beginning of November. This event celebrates the combination of NZ artworks in Flaxmere’s garden gallery and restored 1890 barn. This is considered to be the very best indoor/outdoor exhibition of its kind in the South Island. We have prided ourselves on the placement of sculptures within ethereal vistas, and paintings, pottery, glass & jewellery in the barn gallery. We aim for the very best environment possible to enhance inspiration enjoyment and sales.

Art in a garden has developed into a wonderful day out for not only art collectors but also families who wish to encourage their children to become involved in the creative world. We offer children’s classes in selected activities.

Live music and a streamside café add to our days and create a relaxed & unhurried feel.

Tickets can be purchased online in the months leading up to the event: www.artinagarden.co.nz