Daffodils on cue for major show
Taranaki was blanketed in snow just a week ago but the first signs of spring are beginning to make their mark.
The daffodil beds of Manaia and Egmont Village have added a splash of colour to the countryside, the tui's familiar song is being heard in the bush-clad hillsides of New Plymouth and lambing has begun.
And following two stunning days of sunshine, strollers and cyclists returned to the coastal walkway as the country sat under a huge anticyclone likely to remain the dominant weather feature for a couple of days yet.
Egmont Village School pupils have, however, noticed the storm has affected this year's daffodils.
"They are all patchy and droopy and a lot of them haven't grown at all. They are usually really bright and yellow but it isn't like that at all this year," said Georgia Dey, 12.
Taranaki growers are keeping a keen eye on their blooms ahead the 85th annual North Island Daffodil Show to be held in Hawera next month, only the second time in the event's history.
Organiser Spud Brogden said the cold weather has slowed the growth of his daffodils.
"The weather has been an issue because the snow cools the ground and stops the flowers from growing as quickly as they usually do."
Although his flowers were not as bright as he'd like, Mr Brogden said the show would be as spectacular as ever with more than 40 exhibitors from out of town.
The Taranaki Cancer Society says its supply of fresh flowers for Daffodil Day on Friday have not been affected by the recent cold snap as they are coming from the South Island. Rebecca Gibson is a Witt journalism student