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Community plants 2,500 natives at restoration site

North Shore businesses, school students, community groups and residents came together last week to plant 2,500 native trees as part of a massive Conservation Week at our Rosedale Park site.

More than 275 volunteers worked at the site across sessions scheduled throughout last week clearing mulch, sowing cover crops and planting natives.

Project co-ordinator Nicky Shave says Rangitoto College students and local Girl Guides spearheaded Saturday’s community planting day, working hard to plant hundreds of natives that had been cared for by residents at nearby Metlifecare village Greenwich Gardens.

Earlier in the week, volunteers from local businesses spent an afternoon on the site behind Hilton Brown Swimming School, transferring mulch from the ground into 15 bioreactors on site.

Staff from Business North Harbour, Stormwater 360, Great Families Charitable Trust, North Harbour Hockey Association, Harbour Sport and the Natural Environment Defence Foundation (NEDF) downed tools at their normal workplaces and picked up gardening tools to help out.

The organic material will spend at least 12 months in the bioreactors to become live compost inoculant that can be used on future environmental projects.

Students from Kristin School and Albany Senior High School (ASHS) were also on site, alongside young people from a North Shore home schooling group, planting trees and shifting mulch.

Some of the ASHS students are also working on a windmill for the site to create a constant water supply to our bioreactors.

Children from Little Earth Montessori pre-school and a group from Wairau Valley Special School helped plant and sowed cover crop seeds, which will stabilise the soil, help retain moisture and hinder weed growth. A big thanks to Davenports Law for sponsoring those seeds.

Thanks also to the team from Untangled Landscapes and Bark Ltd for working until dark on Friday evening, placing the native plants on site ready for the community planting day.

Nicky Shave says it’s been amazing to have a range of sectors, cultural groups and generations in the community, from the very youngest to the oldest, working on this project, which is supporting environmental sustainability in the North Shore area, contributing to mitigating the impact of climate change and offering learning opportunities for everyone involved.

“As well as planting more than 2500 trees, we shifted three tonnes of feedstock into the bioreactors.”

Another volunteer day will be held at the site this Saturday to plant the remaining 1,000 trees so they can take hold before the dry summer weather sets in.

Spring Planting Day

When: 10am – 1pm, Saturday, 17 September

Where: Te Hōnonga a Iwi Restoring Rosedale Park project site, behind Hilton Brown Swimming in Volkner Place, Albany

What to bring: Gumboots or old shoes, a raincoat, gardening gloves, drinking water and a spade if you have one

RSVP: Let us know you are coming along by emailing

Parking: The Hilton Brown Swimming carpark is not available on Saturdays so either look for street parking in the nearby area or park at North Harbour Hockey and walk to the site.

Once the planting is done, the project team can concentrate on continuing soil and water quality analysis, the pest management programme that’s part of the project, site maintenance and monitoring tree survival and growth rates.

“We hope that this pilot project will demonstrate the feasibility of using bio-organic processes to control weed, with a view to expanding this approach across Tāmaki Makaurau.”

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