Go green this winter with Greater Wellington’s planting days
Communities keen to restore our region’s biodiversity are invited to get out their green thumbs. Greater Wellington’s winter planting season is underway, with a goal as lofty as the treetops: to get one million plants in the ground.
The winter planting tradition brings together mana whenua, contractors, schools, community groups and volunteers to regreen our region. Plants are great volunteers themselves: they promote biodiversity, improve water quality and beautify our region, just by being alive and well.
There will be plenty of opportunities for people to get their hands dirty this year, with a dozen planting days planned. Belmont Regional Park already has 4000 new plants, courtesy of a community planting day organised by Porirua City Council in partnership with Ngāti Toa, Ngahere Korowai and Greater Wellington. Daran Ponter, Chair of Greater Wellington, was in attendance.
“We had 117 people there on the day, and 80 of them were volunteers from the community. It shows what the Wellington region can achieve when we come together,” Cr Ponter said. “These plants will remove greenhouse gasses and help to protect us from floods, preserving te taiao for future generations.”
Key planting days coming up are at Ōrua-pouanui / Baring Head (9 July) and Roto Parangarahu / Parangarahu Lakes (16 July) in East Harbour Regional Park, and Battle Hill (23 July). Volunteers will be provided with a spade and the guaranteed warm feeling that comes from regreening our region.
Four planting days have already taken place, and tamariki from local schools have planted hundreds of plants in Wainuiomata and Belmont regional parks. Toby Barach, Project Lead for Parks Restoration at Greater Wellington, looks forward to the progress to come.
“We have ordered 986,089 seedlings for winter planting this year,” said Barach. “Contractors will be working across the region to get the majority of plants in the ground. It’s an ambitious target, because we owe it to our environment to push what’s possible.”
Barach added, “Our last planting day of the season isn’t until 2 September, so there’s plenty of time to find your gardening gloves and get stuck in.”
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