Weeding at Mangemangeroa Valley Reserve gets underway

Dean, Mik, Craig and Warwick with their tools of trade after their blackberry morning; plant protectors make a difference. Photo supplied

Now that spring has arrived, so have the longer hours of day which indicate to plants, but particularly weeds, that it is now time to get growing.

Each Wednesday at 9amm, a band of weeders meet at the container by the Mangemangeroa Valley Reserve and then set off to reduce the weed problems.

“The blackberry in the gully beside the Rotary Walk received a good going over, and all in all a very satisfying couple of hours,” said works convenor Sally Barclay.

“Now the nikau – and other damp loving plants – can be transferred to this gully and should make a very pleasant sight.

“We are most grateful to Council Parks who supplied us with saws, leather gloves, grubber and plant poison for the cut stumps and the Howick Local Board for their grant which went towards the purchase of mulch mats and protectors.”

This season’s plantings started with two successful community planting mornings when around 3200 young trees were planted into the reserve.

These eco-sourced plants were each protected from the pukekos and rabbits by a plant protector and, apart from the manuka, each plant was surrounded by a weed mat which reduces water loss during the summer months.

“We were made aware of just how successful these mats were last summer when we hand-watered manuka following the arson attempt on the slope below Archies Lookout,” Barclay said.

“After the late replacement planting of burned species, most of those with mats survived, while those without mats succumbed to the dry season.”

  • Anyone who would like to help reduce weeds in the reserve and has a couple of hours free on a Wednesday morning can contact Sally 0211743938 or email: sallyannbarclay@gmail.com