Sunday, February 28, 2010
A Delightful Discovery
Joy and Robbie Lawson live on two acres at Makakihi. Maka where? Makakihi, that tiny town between Glenavy and Timaru; a river, a factory making potato chips, a tavern and a few folk selling country crafts. Joy is a potter, Robbie a gardener. I met them when the Glenavy Women’s Institute found that the planned venue for their February meeting was not available. Not to worry, one of the committee members had relatives with a nice garden at Makakihi. Twenty W.I. members descended on the Lawsons, were welcomed, entertained and fed home mixed barbecued rissoles with three salads, a range of pickles and sauces Escoffier would have envied, plus fruit salad and ice cream to follow, under a spreading flowering cherry tree and the biggest wisteria I have ever seen.
But first they showed us their two acres, borders filled with flowers and shrubs from which Robbie takes cuttings for sale, winding paths through glens of shady trees, Joy’s pottery is in a little courtyard behind a lattice screen, her stock of garden ornaments displayed outside; quirky hedgehogs, pukekos, spotted mushrooms and dozens of miniature gardens set is unorthodox containers; a picture frame fastened to the fence, a discarded colander filled with tiny cacti. Indoor pottery is displayed next to Joy’s studio and in a blue caravan set in another part of the garden. Nearer the house is a ‘reflexology path,’ carefully sized flat stones have been set on edge so one can walk in bare feet while massaging one’s soles. Joy and Robbie preach the value of mulch and carrots like tree ferns, laden tomato vines demonstrate their beliefs.
Where are they? Driving north look for the last sign ‘Plants and Pottery’ on the right before driving on to the bridge. Their two acres is a wonderful example of how a house and land can combine to make a real place for living in. It’s worth stopping to see.