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What to do for winter

April is when autumn really gets going. The days are noticeably shorter and night temperatures cooler, so we need to be preparing the garden for winter. Here are Metropol’s tips for what to focus on in your mid-autumn garden.



Blooming bulbs

Spring bulbs may still be planted now, if space is lacking plant them in containers and pack them in. Bulbs in pots can be planted much closer than those in the garden to achieve a full display when flowering.

Vege versions

Tomato plants will be getting to
the end of their season so remove the old plants and dispose of the vines especially if they have had any disease. Best not to compost them. Dig potatoes if the ground is likely to get water-logged and store them in a cool dark place.

Leaves and lawns

Fallen leaves literally smother lawns, preventing light and oxygen from penetrating. If you don’t want patchy lawns this spring, collect

the leaves and pop them in your compost bin or in a separate bin to make leaf mould.

Flowering and fruity

Cut back perennials. Prune berry fruits. Do clean up spraying on fruit trees so that any pest or disease will not be carried over to the next season. Any frost tender plants need to be moved inside if in containers or else covered for protection once the harder frosts start.

In general

It is important to cut back any over-hanging branches on trees or shrubs near pathways and to treat paths for moss so that we are safe when the weather is wet and cold.


Cure your winter hair blues: GM Hair Design

Is your hair feeling dehydrated? Unloved? With split ends, or lacks lustre and you are struggling to style it? You might just need a hair detox.


GM Hair Design is your place for addressing winter hair blues, with its Hair Detox Treatment offer to address 25 different hair issues.

For just $120, it lasts up to 32 shampoos and the paraben and sulphate free treatment uses 100 percent natural keratin, which penetrates the hair follicle to heal the hair from the inside out.

Salon co-owners Mike and Glynis Hamel say: “This miracle treatment leaves you with 80 percent less breakage, 97 percent improvement in shine, 83 percent boost in colour symmetry, and 78 percent better colour.

“It is a detangler, repairs dry damaged hair, smooths and softens, shines, is anti-humidity, colour protection, is anti-pollution, reduces split ends, strengthens fragile hair, gives volume, contains a UV filter, offers protection from thermal styling, controls moisture retention, and evens porous hair.

“It is anti-static, restores lustre, makes blow drying faster and easier, improves elasticity, seals the cuticle, is paraben free, sulphate free, cruelty free, and is altogether an advanced and light weight treatment.”

If you can’t make it to the salon, try GM’s own Christchurch-made environmentally friendly products, Mike’s Hair Care.

Wet hair and apply MHC Conditioner to mid lengths and ends of hair and leave in; rinse out with MHC Shampoo; apply MHC conditioner; rinse out and towel dry; apply MHC styling products.

Goodbye tired winter hair, hello party season!

Call 0800 464 247 or email to book.


In the snow about après ski

Europe may be out of bounds, but that does not mean elements of its mountainside culture need to be.


Those in the snow know one of the perks of hitting the slopes is what comes at the end of the day – après ski.

A mountainside custom coined in the Swiss and French Alps, après ski is, as the name suggests, what comes “after” a day on your skis or snowboards.

Some European and North American ski destinations are known for their post-slope party atmospheres, Kiwis can still get a slice of the action close to home – even if your idea of action is a relaxed mulled wine by the fire.

And there’s no better place to indulge in some après than at the foot of the Southern Alps in Queenstown and Wanaka.

QUEENSTOWN: With dozens of bars all within a 1km radius, simply follow the lake’s edge or cobbled lanes and you’ll find yourself on the doorstep of many an après destination.

WANAKA: More lakeside après offerings await in Wanaka township, or if you’re heading down the mountain consider stopping at the iconic Cardrona pub, complete with roaring outdoor fire.

APRÈS AT HOME: Make the most of your bach or hired accommodation by whipping up some mulled wine or buttered whisky from home. Liven things up with some retro ski gear, and après like it’s 1980.


Check, please!

This winter, try an elegant check coat to elevate your outwear – and your body temperature.



The slow creep of winter can no longer be ignored.

The icy temperatures are knocking on our doors and, now we’re allowed out of the house, rugging up to brave the elements has never been more appealing, even more so if you have a chic check coat to adorn.

An irrefutable nod to Burberry’s resurrection of its iconic trench, we’re now seeing this newest incarnation of plaid everywhere from design houses to the high street and we’re welcoming its warmer, woollen fabrications.

If the classic Burberry palette of camel, beige and rust tones are not for you, many designs stray into safer darker shades or, conversely, add bold pops of colour for the sartorially adventurous.

The check effect transcends cut too, offering endless options to suit your preferred silhouettes and pair perfectly with your favourite wintry layers.


Dishing the dirt

Winter’s arrival may conjure up images of the indoors, snuggled up fireside with a good book or Netflix series. But green thumbs know winter is not the time to retire the gumboots and secateurs. Instead, it’s an opportune moment to prepare for the flowering seasons.



Whether it’s a full-scale landscape or pre-spring spruce up, here’s our pick for the handiest gardening trends, tools and tips to help you in the garden this winter

The Tip: Let’s landscape
With summer foliage long departed, June and early July marks the best time to re-think your landscaping. Perhaps you’ve been eyeing up a new spot for a vegetable garden, want to plant some citrus, or relocate some shrubs and small trees. Now is the time to do it.

The Tool: Garden carts
Move over wheelbarrows, there’s a new yard companion making tracks. Often sporting four wheels with an extendable handle, the gardening cart is gaining traction as a functional addition to your shed designed to make your days in the garden easier.
While wheelbarrows have long been the go-to for carting gardening waste, soils and tools, the flat bed of a cart is perfect for also moving more delicate items like pots and plants. Some models even come with lids which can double as a seat or bench.
When looking for a gardening cart you may want to consider its ability to bear weight with a sturdy chassis; its manoeuvrability with pivoting wheels, and how easily it can tilt and dump your contents.

The Trend: Indoor plants
If there’s no landscaping to be done, why not indulge that desire to turn your attention indoors and embrace the greenery trend of the decade: houseplants. The addition of indoor greenery to home, retail and commercial spaces is a gardening trend that just won’t quit. And there’s no better time to bring your gardening indoors than over the chilly, wet wintry months. Not only do houseplants freshen up your space, there’s a bunch of evidence interior vegetation can provide psychological benefits like stress-reduction, boosting creative thinking, and reducing anxiety. As many indoor plant parents will know, it’s always important to ensure your houseplants are well placed for sunlight, watered regularly and get enough access to warmer temperatures.


Exploring Queenstown

With winter’s opening shots recasting our adventure capital’s offerings, the razored ridgeline of the Remarkables is sporting a decent coast of snow, accentuating the resort town’s cinematic good looks.



It’s worth the ride alone on the Skyline Gondola, to drink it all in. The gracious old lady of the lake, TSS Earnslaw, will resume faithfully plying Wakatipu’s waters in early July, but if you’re after a fresher scoop of floating pleasure, board Southern Discoveries’ gleaming catamaran.

They operate daily excursions to Mt. Nicholas Station, one of New Zealand’s most historic, family run merino sheep stations.

Spanning 100,000 acres of golden high country terrain, the 45-minute scenic cruise down Lake Wakatipu affords glorious vistas of Mt. Earnslaw, Cecil Peak, and the tucked away valley beneath Mt. Creighton, where the Hollywood set have previously purchased homes, including Arnie Schwarzenegger and John Travolta.

Arriving at Mt. Nicholas Station, you have a variety of add-on sightseeing options including a 4WD Safari, a two-hour high country walk or the Woolshed Experience.

I opted for the latter, which was a wonderfully hands-on exposition of merino wool’s journey from fresh fleece to top-end clothing. All Mt. Nicholas Station merino wool is sold to Icebreaker.

As a premium wine-growing region, swooned over for its pinot noir, a swirl of wine trail tours can whisk you across the vineyards of the Gibbston Valley and beyond.

I cheated and headed straight to The Winery, a one-stop-tasting shop in the heart of Queenstown and also Arrowtown (the Queenstown site is yet to reopen).

It’s indulgently effortless, where you can taste over 80 wines, including several dozen delicious pinot noirs, at the press of a button.

All of the industry’s rockstars are showcased, including Valli Bannockburn, Mt. Difficulty, Black Ridge and Amisfield.

Complement your wine sampling, by grazing from a flavourful platter of local cheese, salami and olives.

Speaking of food, if the billowing tangle of humanity, pre-Covid, spilling along the footpath of Shotover Street, outside Fergburger, turned you off from sampling the gourmet delights in buns – now’s your chance without the crowds.

One of my favourite noshing spots is Akarua Wines & Kitchen by Artisan, just up the road by Lake Hayes.

On Steamer Wharf, graze heartily from the share plates at Public Kitchen & Bar, a convivial celebration of local produce overlooking Lake Wakatipu and the gazillion dollar views.

Another recommended fuss-free experience is the Ballarat Trading Company, stunningly outfitted in the style of an 1850’s trading post, with lip-smacking gourmet food.

Walking options abound and heading east from the town centre, the Frankton Arm Walkway is a heart-stealer, with its unobstructed lake and mountain views.

A coffee stop beckoned at Boat Shed Café & Bistro. Its back-story is fascinating, set in the restored New Zealand Railways Shipping Office after beginning life as a store in the 1870s.

In 1936 it was bought by Frank Duncan, a Dunedin lawyer, who moved the building from the town centre to its current waterfront location.

From The Boat Shed, the gravel walkway wends its way along the shoreline to Frankton, passing a quaint parade of rustic Kiwi cribs – a laid-back world away from the pretence of some of Queenstown’s more recent glamour pad developments. They’re anything but flashy. It is such a great antidote to savour this unmolested vestige of old Queenstown.

Ten kilometres west of Queenstown, on the road to Glenorchy, I enjoyed a brisk hike in the Mt. Creighton Scenic Reserve. After a steady climb, the peaceful trail through native bush steeped in goldmining history leads to Lake Dispute.

There’s a variety of options, but this 90-minute loop circuit hits the sweet spot.

Not only does it give you the chance to gawp at some of the under-the-radar celebrity hideaway trophy houses, strung across the valley, but the elevated vistas across the lake to Cecil Peak and Walter Peak are supreme, delivering a fresh scoop of Queenstown’s unstoppable beauty.


Winter adventure awaits: Destination Queenstown

There’s never been a better time for Kiwis to visit Queenstown and the town’s community is ready and waiting to welcome you for the winter.



The snow has gathered on the mountains and all four ski areas will open to offer Queenstown’s epic winter experience. What’s more, a recent survey of Queenstown businesses showed that 96 percent of respondents would be open for business this winter. Combine days on the slopes with delightful après ski, vibrant nightlife and cosmopolitan dining by night, and give your legs a rest with a day’s excursion to Gibbston, Glenorchy or Arrowtown. Perhaps an adventure in the air or on the water is on the cards so you can take in the scenery and challenge yourself with a new experience?
What are the most important elements to your Queenstown itinerary? Read on to find out.

Family fun: Pack up the kids and watch them experience a range of firsts in Queenstown—first snow play? Tick. First lake adventure on a steamer? Tick. On or off the mountain, there’s so much to see and do, great learner slopes and ski schools for the young ones, and this winter, a bunch of great deals too.

Private touring: The exclusive offerings don’t end in the kitchen. Queenstown’s wineries make for the perfect day off the slopes, and a bespoke tour is available with a private charter for your group. Let your preferences guide you, or ask for expert advice to create the perfect wine odyssey.
Group tours to Gibbston’s cellar door highlights are also available if you’re keen to make new friends.

Sustain yourself in style: You’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to après ski. You could easily be here for weeks on end and not visit the same place twice—although a favourite may make itself apparent a couple of days in. Local restaurants are continuously reworking and updating their menus meaning even your all-time favourites will have some new winter warmers this year.
Apartment dwellers also have private chefs on offer to provide a special meal without leaving your wintry home whether you’re celebrating a special birthday, or giving your holiday the sayonara it deserves.

A room with a view: From hotels perched right on the lake’s edge, to high up overlooking the Wakatipu and Remarkables mountain ranges, there’s an accommodation option for all styles of traveller to Queenstown. Looking to splash out on some luxury? The town fit for a queen has that in spades too.

Queenstown’s slopes open days:
Coronet Peak 26 June
Cardrona Alpine Resort 26 June
Treble Cone 27 June
The Remarkables 4 July

Thinking of heading to Queenstown this winter? Find all the inspiration you need, plus awesome deals from Queenstown experiences at



This month has welcomed the first snow of the season, with a blanket of fresh white heralding Queenstown’s winter transformation.



The Southern Lakes ski areas are all set to open in coming days, with Coronet Peak and Cardrona Alpine Resort scheduled to open on 26 June, Treble Cone scheduled to open on 27 June and The Remarkables Ski Area set to open on 4 July.

Destination Queenstown interim chief executive Ann Lockhart says snow fans should start digging out their ski gear, tuning skis and snowboards and booking flights to visit Queenstown this winter, joining visitors from all over New Zealand.

“Winter at Alert Level 1 means that Queenstown’s ski areas have very few restrictions—skiers and boarders will be truly free to experience all we have to offer and we’re very excited for this!

“There’s been a high level of anticipation for the first significant snow fall of the season after a few early dustings in the last few weeks, and some frosty mornings,” she says.

“Queenstown is the Southern Hemisphere’s leading four season resort, the skiing is world-class and the range of activities in Queenstown itself are second to none. The ski areas are fully prepared for safe operations as we move through Covid Alert Levels, and our businesses are open and ready to welcome visitors again—with 96 percent of respondents to a recent survey intending to open for winter,” Ann says.


Caped Crusader

There is the saying that ‘not all heroes wear capes’ but maybe in this case, they can! Be the super mum, colleague, friend or partner that you are and make sure to dress the part because capes are making a comeback in fashion. Suit up, caped crusaders – we check how you can style these statement pieces.




Little Red: Channel your inner fairy-tale fantasy by wearing a hooded cape. We’re not suggesting go all out and wear a maxi hooded cape in blood red, but instead maybe a subtle nod to the heroine of our favourite fable.

Cape X Blazer Crossbreed: Everyone loves a blazer; it’s a classic classy piece that has been a workplace staple since we can remember. Why not give the cape blazer a try? Give your outfit a bit of a flare… literally.

Dress ups: It’s sometimes easy to walk out of the door and forget to bring a jacket. Avoid that completely this winter by wearing a cape dress to work. Look as if you’ve just stepped off the runway and into the boardroom.

Snug as a bug: We also have the polar opposite option of wearing a blanket cape (we don’t mean – actually wrap a blanket over your shoulders). This piece will look great paired with some knee-high boots. Don’t sacrifice being warm for looking fabulous this season.


Thrive through winter

Your little garden projects don’t take a break just because it’s coming into winter… and neither should you. We’ve pulled together all of the tips and tricks to making sure your Garden of Eden stays alive and thriving.



  1. Don’t forget your roots: While we’re certain Six60 wasn’t being literal… in this case, we are. Winter is the perfect time to replenish your soil and make sure that it has all of the nutrients it needs to fight off that winter weather. Just as we need lots of vitamin C in winter, your garden needs good fertiliser.
  2. Catalogue your crops: You wouldn’t go out in the snow in your swimmers; the same goes for your choice of vegetables in your garden. Make sure you plant the appropriate crops to the season – broccoli, garlic, kale, onions, silverbeet and spinach are just a few.
  3. Too much at stake: Understandably you can’t be in your garden 24/7 to hold down the fort. Ensure your plants are protected from the cold winter winds by staking them – it’ll provide them with the extra support they need to make it through the chilly months.
  4. Ring-a-ring-a-roses: The colder months are the best time to plant your new roses. It’s also a perfect opportunity to prune any existing ones you have growing. This will help them with growth and help them avoid any pesky diseases.

If you want more help and advice, head into Terra Viva Home & Garden. They have all the tips, tricks and tools to meet your gardening needs, while also offering a full landscape design service that is very popular with customers.