Young Mia finally celebrates naming of new rhododendron

Mia Edmonds, 4, was delighted to finally plant the ‘Rosy Comet’ at Pukeiti, a new hybrid vireya Rhododendron she won the naming rights to in a Pukeiti summer competition.

Saturday is the only day the Edmonds family has off to spend time together due to Mia’s parents work schedules, and this Saturday was particularly special.

Mia was joined by her sister Taylor, 6, her parents Kerry and Jen, and grandparents, Ronnie and Noel as they celebrated with lunch at the Rainforest Eatery before helping to plant the Rosy Comet firmly in its new home within the covered vireya walk.

“It’s fantastic to see the younger generation having an interest in gardening and plants,” says Greg Rine, Regional Gardens Manager.

“That’s what the gardens are all about, getting people from all ages outdoors and connecting with nature.”

That’s something the Edmonds family know first-hand, as Mia and Taylor are keen outdoor enthusiasts and the family spend many Saturdays exploring local parks and gardens. They are excited to be able to return to Pukeiti and revisit the Rosy Comet for years to come.

“We are always out on some type of bush walk and last weekend we actually took the girls up the Pukeiti summit,” says Jen.

With its rosy pink petals and elongated shape, Rosy Comet is a perfect name for this new variety which is a hybrid of two species - Rhododendron tuba and Rhododendron praetervisum, bred by Keith Adams in New Plymouth.  Find it in the kākāpō house at the end of the vireya walk at Pukeiti.