25 Years of Kauri Park

Posted on November 30, 2018

In 1993 saw the beginnings of Kauri Park. John Wearmouth had long been in the occupation of growing crops. In the early days John and his brother Kelvin were market gardeners growing crops such as pumpkins, melons, squash and put in kiwano’s for good measure. John had progressed onto growing Zantedeschia and his sons were leaving school and coming into the workforce. In 1993 one of John’s sons decided that flowers were not his thing and bought some young plants from Lyndale Nurseries and started what is now Kauri Park.

The next few years involved a lot of learning about where Kauri Park would situate itself in the marketplace. Duncan and Davies had been one of the leading nurseries in NZ but had split into many smaller enterprises and leaving opportunities to fill the spaces. There was a need for more Pb18 grade plants and Kauri Park produced a lot of these in the early days.

25 years ago, every garden centre had its own autonomy and we would load our little truck up with finished product and go around the garden centres selling on the spot market. Nowadays almost everything is centralized, and buying is done at head office. Another point here is that the prices are still more of less the same 25 years on. This is crazy really.

The plant industry was going through changes whereby the “Landscape” industry was emerging. People in NZ used to landscape their own sections and gardening was a weekend project. This was changing as lives were getting busier and sections were getting smaller. The Commercial Landscaper was also in demand as the shopping centres such as Albany and Botany Downs were coming into society. Kauri Park saw an opportunity and started working closely with the landscapers.

During 2005 Kauri Park decided to move entirely out of the Retail sector and focus on the Landscape and Revegetation sectors. The nursery started on a development and expansion program which is still continuing today as the environmental needs for the protection of habitats grows.

21 October 2010 was one of the most drastic days in the history of Kauri Park. In 20 minutes, our building was razed by a terrifying fire reaching excess of 1,200°C. This event was like a catalyst for the company. The team grew very close through this tragedy and set a whole new level of belief as to what can be achieved through adversity. This culture remains and is a landmark point for us. Kauri Park changed that day.

What is happening 25 years into our journey here? Kauri Park today is going through more changes. The current nursery site is full and with no more room to expand, we are on the move. We have purchased some land nearby and are going to relocate part of the nursery to this new site. We will keep you informed of the progress as it happens, and the contractors are about to start shifting earth. We are very exited about this latest project.

This is the last Green News of 2018 and this year has gone by very quickly. Have a safe and a well-earned break over Christmas. We will be closing the gates between the 20th December and returning on the 7th January 2019.

Thanks for 2018 and we’ll see you in 2019.