70 YEARS IN THE MAKING
Redwoods has been part of the Kerikeri landscape for the best part of seventy years, when in 1957 Maurice and
Shirley Kempthorne bought the land. They planted a citrus and tamarillo orchard, built their home and raised their
three children. Mark, Michael and Mary, and as the family grew so did the business.
They first started selling fruit from under their house, which is now Redwoods Dental.
The buildings you see today
were first built in the mid 70’s and the lining of the walls were milled from their own redwood trees. It gradually
grew to selling all fruit and vegetables and serviced the area through the 70’s and 80’s. They were then famous for
their “all you can eat” free watermelons and selling locally grown navel oranges and tangelos.
Mark continued to run the orchard and when Michael became interested in growing plants he established a nursery
and then expanded to include a garden centre and café. Maurice was a larger than life character who was very
involved in the Kerikeri community. Here at Redwoods Garden Centre we are proud of our history and the
continuing link with the Kempthorne family through Mary, their daughter.
Redwoods Garden Centre was purchased by John and Robyn Rowe in 2013. Born and bred Northlanders, they also
own and operate Kericell Nurseries, supplying seedlings, herbs and potted colour to garden centres throughout the
North Island, and of course also to Redwoods. They redesigned and upgraded the site to make it the garden centre
you see today.
In September 2018, as Redwoods continues to go from strength to strength and it passed onto the capable hands of
Cathy Pennell and Lance Petty. Their passion for the garden centre and gardening will see it continue to thrive into