What an amazing day! On September 15, 2019, over 150 locals turned up to Harbourview-Orangihina Park in Te Atatu Peninsula to get stuck into some riparian revegetation. It was a special day, with the inclusion of a small memorial planting of 51 trees and shrubs, dedicated to those who tragically lost their lives in the Christchurch Terror Attack, six months earlier.
Proceedings were opened with karakia from kaumatua Sonny Neha and followed by words from John Tamihere, Chairperson of the Henderson Massey Local Board, Shane Henderson and Chairperson of the Te Atatu Marae Coalition Trust Board, Mihi Te Huia. The day was all set to be magic.
Following the all important health and safety briefing and planting instructions from Sustainable Coastlines and Te Atatu Marae Coalition, the community got stuck into the planting and mulching. The site was almost perfect, the plants being an extension of the riparian strips already there, sheltering the awa that flow through the park. This meant that we could plant a number of more sensitive species such as Rimu, Kauri, Rewarewa and Kawakawa due to the protection offered and the sheltered site.
Just before lunch, a crowd gathered at a nearby site for the special memorial planting. 51 trees and smaller plants, including two kauri were layed out in a small grove and sheltered by 20 harakeke (flax) to represent the wider community. The plants were first blessed by Imam Mohmed Patel followed by karakia from Matua Hone Pene. Members of the community were asked to step forward to plant the trees in their new home, overlooking the Waitemata Harbour and sunrise. Once all the plants were in the ground, we sang a waiata as a final offering to all.
Following these proceedings, it was about time for lunch – with a delicious biriyani halal option to boot! We refreshed ourselves with a cold Phoenix Organic drink and got geared up for the afternoon shift.
The afternoon was spent getting the last of the tress in the ground and getting everything (almost) mulched. The last volunteer didn’t leave until well after 4pm, by which time we were all completely spent.
Thanks again to our key sponsors who have been able to help make this day happen: Te Atatu Marae Coalition, Ministry of Primary Industries and Matariki Tu Rakau, Auckland Council and the Henderson-Massey Local Board, Kwik-N- Ezy Canopies and Phoenix Organics.
Special thanks to all our volunteers and to everyone involved. What a magic day, let’s do it again soon.
Sustainable Coastlines and the Te Atatu Marae Coalition invite you to a special day of planting at Auckland’s iconic Harbourview-Orangihina Park. We’ve been working on pulling this day together for a while now and we’re very excited to see it come to fruition. On this day we will be planting approximately 2,500 native riparian and secondary growth species along with new and existing planting areas for the benefit of the awa flowing through the park, the wildlife that relies on them and the people who enjoy them. Special thanks goes to Matariki Tu Rakau for funding this planting day.
This is a great opportunity to get out and contribute to environmental restoration in your local neighbourhood as well and engage with local environmental groups who will be present. So please, come along, bring your family, bring your friends and get ready for an awesome day. There will be lunch, there will be education and there will be good vibes all round.
As part of our special proceedings, we will also be establishing a memorial planting of 51 rōngoa plants, dedicated to those who tragically lost their lives in the Christchurch Terror Attacks earlier this year.
Proceedings will start at 10am at Harbourview-Orangihina Park, near the main carpark, off the roundabout opposite Gloria Ave.
Please contact Fletcher on [email protected]