I've always loved plants, growing up surrounded by them on a lifestyle block in Christchurch where my Mum grew cut flowers and worked as a florist and my Dad planted a tree farm. I loved living somewhere where I could be practical and in the outside world so much. I declared as a child that I wanted to be a horticulturalist and a landscape architect, a family trait on my mother’s side, where keen gardeners, farming and horticulture crop up everywhere.

My horticultural influences lay dormant for more than 20 years during work as a lawyer and in grant giving in New Zealand and the UK. There was some return to my roots with work in government, funding conservation and environmental groups. After taking a part time organic horticulture course while I was working, my interest in horticulture became harder to ignore.

I said goodbye to office work, did a year long course at the BHU (where I am with my Goddaughter in the photo on the right), then set up Organic Gardening Services as a way to work in organic horticulture in Wellington. Six years on and the business continues to grow and my unusual love of weeding is as strong as ever.

Anthea's story