The Open Gardens of South Canterbury

The Open Shed Trek

Go to Timaru Visitor Centre
2 George St, Timaru

Phone 03 687 9997



Fashion Focus, Highfield Mall

SC Hospice Shop, Orbell St

Supporting Hopsice SC

Funders, supporters and sponsors of the 2013 Timaru Festival of Roses include:









Timaru Festival of Roses


Save the 2014 dates - 24-30 November 2014 (Market Day 30 November)

About the Festival of Roses

One of New Zealand's premier garden events, The Timaru Festival of Roses is a vibrant and entertaining fiesta of summer, creativity and of course the Queen of Flowers – the Rose.

Each year hundreds of visitors to the region mix with thousands of locals to welcome the beginning of summer and the bloom of the roses. The Festival combines stunning public and private garden displays, rose themed tours, fabulous floral art creations, children's activities, music, theatre and creativity – all with a huge level of community participation.

The Festival attracts garden lovers and creative enthusiasts from all corners of New Zealand and our reputation is such that international tour groups are planning their itineraries (often one or two years in advance) around the annual end of November Festival dates.

The entire Festival and in particular the Market Day is a huge community effort with many non-profit groups and service clubs using the event to raise valuable funds.

The Festival achievements include winning the South Canterbury 2008 Trustpower Community Awards.


Festival planning is in full bloom, and it will be a rose lover’s mecca, during the week of activities for the Timaru Festival of Roses.

Colourful cupcakes will be top of the menu at this year’s Rose Festival, with hundreds of entries already confirmed for the BNZ sponsored Children’s Floral Fantasy.

Festival Chairperson, Jan Chambers said “more than 500 primary school children from throughout South Canterbury are already planning their designs”.

There are separate sections for edible and non-edible cupcakes with separate age groups from 5 years to 12 years old

The Port Fm Shop Window Competition will be three times larger than previous years.  Fifty stores throughout Timaru have signed on to decorate their windows using the 2013 theme of ‘Ring a Ring of Roses’.

“This huge increase in interest from local businesses is very exciting and has come about through the efforts of two new members of the organising committee” said Mrs Chambers.

Members of the public can vote for their favourite display and go in the draw to win prizes.  A celebrity judging panel will also choose the winning windows.

The Open Gardens of South Canterbury.  Eight striking private gardens have been selected and will be open to the public on 29 and 30 November.  They range from petite and inspirational to magnificent country estates.  Within each garden will be an additional special attraction; music, art, sculpture; demonstrations and treats for sale.   The Blakemore Garden in Longview Road, Pleasant Point is also the ‘twilight garden’ and will open to 8.00pm on Friday 29.

Caroline Bay Hall Exhibitions.  Three South Canterbury fabric groups have joined forces to stage the Rose Festival Textile Exhibition - Creative Fibre, Aoraki Embroidery and Timaru Patchworking and Quilting. They will have numerous works on display including large wall hangings, quilts and exquisite needle work along with the opportunity to learn from these talented craft-workers as they share expertise and knowledge.   Also featuring in the hall is an art exhibition featuring the works of Annie Lambourne, and superb floral and creative art displays based on the theme ‘Ring a Ring of Roses’.

Spring Rose Show. Your senses will be overwhelmed with the smell and colour of hundreds of roses as the South Canterbury Rose Society’sheld their annual show, also in the Hall.

The Open Shed Trek – something new for this year that aims to get more blokes visiting Rose Festival events.  Open the shed door and who what you will discover on a visit to some of Timaru’s finest man caves - Saturday 30th November.  What’s inside the Man Cave might astound you – they are all unique and all individual with everything from special projects - car restoration, plane building and classic collections of hats, rugby programmes or model railways.

Roses on the Bay Market Day is on Sunday 1 December at Caroline Bay

Expect colour, excitement, and fun.   Enjoy plentiful plants, wonderful crafts and garden accessories.  150 stall sites full of thousands for gifts perfect for Christmas stockings.  From wooden toys, to designer clothing, custom buckles to the latest in landscape art.  Plus heaps of exotic food stalls.  Something for everyone.  A special Children’s Marquee with live music, a Magic show, face painting and our first ever Cup Cake eating competition. Plus a fantastic line up of all –day entertainment featuring girl band, the Foxy Tones from Dunedin, local award winning country artist Cam Scott, The Timaru Glee Club, Waimataitai School Brass Band and St Josephs Ukulele group.

Do you wnat to be involved?

Do you have a treasured garden located within the Timaru town or rural areas? We are looking for properties to show off during the Festival. All sizes, shapes and styles of garden would fit it, the main ingredient is the enthusiasm, devotion and creativity of the garden owners. We are interested to hear from you (Phone us 03 688 5531 or email