Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 

Stunning results in native plant trials in Port Hills

Stunning results in native plant trials in Port Hills

Native direct seeding methods trialled and developed in the Port Hills
Residential Red Zone could have huge implications for native plant
re-vegetation and erosion control on steep sites around the country.

Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) has been working closely with contractor Red Tree Environmental Solutions to develop rapid and cost-effective methods to grow native plants on steep terrains.

Red Tree specialises in ecological restoration and approached LINZ to use a number of Residential Red Zone sites in the Port Hills to trial a variety of direct seeding methods across multiple sites with different soil profiles and geographical orientations.

"We have seeded a variety of native plants species over the past few years looking for the ideal blend. The goal was to achieve rapid plant establishment whilst reducing weed competition." says Red Tree project manager Andrew Cummins.
"The trials have come up with a really potent method that combines compost applied pneumatically as a blanket, which is direct seeded.

Compost is one of the best ways to filter sediment in run off and plant root growth is the best way to stabilise these hill sites." says Mr Cummins.

Over 450 properties in the Port Hills have been cleared since the Canterbury earthquakes and LINZ has been responsible for replanting and maintaining the sites where houses can no longer be built due to rock fall and cliff collapse.

Matt Bradley, acting group manager Ports Hills, says that the partnership with Red Tree has created some great outcomes within the first 18 months and may have more positive knock-on effects.

"These trials have given us effective new eco-friendly methods to regenerate the vegetation on the hill sites and reduce the amount of maintenance required," says Mr Bradley.

"The outcomes are really exciting for the environment, the community, for LINZ and, of course, for the taxpayers."

The clover trials on particularly steep sites has been so successful in suppressing weed growth that LINZ has asked the company to introduce clover across most of its planted Port Hills sites.

Mr Bradley says that one of the biggest challenges of regenerating the Port Hills red zone properties has been the condition of the soil following demolitions, which was different in each site, and often dominated by loess clay, which gets boggy in winter and dry in summer.

Red Tree’s solution to this challenge was the compost blanket.

"It provides an ideal growing medium, much like the forest floor. It is a cost effective alternative to top soil that is pasteurised to render it free of weeds and pathogens," says Mr Cummins.

"And of course it is a wonderful recycling story to see the content of Christchurch green bins providing the key ingredient for returning native plants to Christchurch hills."

The impact of the compost blanket is easy to see, even for the uninitiated, on the final trial site on Brenchley Road in Lyttelton.

On one side, the traditional revegetation approach on a clay site shows plants struggling to establish, despite the abundance of rain and sun, while the compost blanket is covered in a lush carpet of native plants, all within the space of nine months.

Intriguingly, one unorthodox crop turned out to provide the final piece of the puzzle.

"Oats have been used to stabilise the compost blanket until the native plants germinate, this was a tip from a veteran gardener," smiles Cummins. "I was looking for a plant with an open root system that was quick to establish, he suggested oats."

The oats spring up rapidly to bind the compost in place and do not adversely compete with the natives. Once the natives are established, the oats are removed and used as mulch between the plants.

Mr Cummins is clearly proud of his findings, which he thinks could have nationwide benefits in land stabilisation and revegetation projects.

"Using the compost blankets allows us to grow natives faster even on really difficult sites, it helps to stabilise hill sites, manage sediment run off and control the weeds which can reduce the cost of maintenance by at least 25%."
ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Scoop Covid-19 Coverage: Auckland To Remain At Level 3 Restrictions, Rest Of NZ At 2 For 12 More Days


Auckland will remain at level three restrictions and the rest of the country at level two for 12 more days Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced.
She said this would be reviewed on August 21, but there was no indication yet anywhere was required to go to level four restrictions.
Ardern said a good start had been made in stamping out the infections associated with the Auckland family cluster and it appeared it had been picked up early. There was still no certainty about where the virus had come from, but it appeared to be new to New Zealand and not a sign the virus was dormant.... More>>

 

Government: Plan To Tackle Problem Plastics

Following the success of the phase out of single-use plastic shopping bags, the Government now has plans to phase out more single-use and problem plastics to reduce waste and protect the environment announced Associate Minister for the Environment ... More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The New Lockdowns, Leadership And Lebanon

As Melbourne has shown, the webs of urban life overlap so extensively that community transmission can be very hard to trace, let alone control. Each of the family members in the South Auckland family at the centre of the current outbreak will have had ... More>>


ALSO:

National: Emma Mellow As Auckland Central Candidate

Tonight the National Party has selected Emma Mellow to stand in the Auckland Central electorate for the 2020 General Election. Emma Mellow replaces retiring MP Nikki Kaye who first won the seat from Labour in 2008. Emma leads a team of communications ... More>>

ALSO:

Travel: Update On New Zealand And The Cook Islands Bubble

The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Henry Puna have welcomed the completion of phase one in the establishment of a travel bubble between New Zealand and the Cook Island. More>>

Election 2020: Labour Launch

E ngā mana e ngā reo Ngāti whātua ngā mana whenua o Tāmaki Makaurau, e tika te kōrero Ehara taku toa he toa (taki tahi) he toa (taki tini) No rēira tātou e huihui mai nei, ka ‘Hoake tonu tātou’ Thank you for that welcome. And thank ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Political Twins, And On Labour Extending Its Wage Subsidy Scheme

A quick quiz for the weekend. Which political party currently represented in Parliament issued a press release yesterday that contained these stirring passages: “[We have] long supported a free trade and free movement area between Canada, Australia, New ... More>>

ALSO:

Democracy 2.0: NextElection Partners With Scoop For Exciting Democracy Tech

Joint Press Release: NextElection, Scoop.co.nz, ScoopCitizen NextElection , a technology platform empowering democracy and Government accountability, and Scoop Independent News have partnered to strengthen citizen participation in the 2020 New Zealand General ... More>>

ALSO:


Covid-19: Poll On Management Approval

New Zealanders’ overall trust in the Ministry of Health and Government to manage the COVID-19 pandemic is at 82%, down from 91% during April. Overall distrust that the Ministry and Government will manage it in ways which best protect themselves More>>

Election 2020: National Releases 2020 Party List

National’s 2020 Party List is a strong mix of experience coming up through our Caucus, and new and exciting talent joining our team from communities across New Zealand, Party President Peter Goodfellow says. “The National Party is incredibly ... More>>

Horizon Research Limited: How Judith Collins Stopped The Bleeding

Horizon Research includes questions on voting from time to time in its surveys – for both forthcoming referenda and general elections. More>>

Your Vote 2020: Bringing Election Coverage To Viewers Across TVNZ Channels And Platforms

As New Zealand gets ready to head to the ballot box this September, 1 NEWS is bringing voters comprehensive coverage and analysis of this year’s General Election. TVNZ’s coverage will draw on the depth of experience held across the 1 NEWS team, says Graeme ... More>>

Economy: 30% Believe Households Worse Off, 298,000 Expect To Lose Jobs

64% of New Zealanders feel the economic position of their households is the same or better than a year ago – and 30% think it is worse or much worse, while 298,000 think they will lose their jobs in the next 12 months. Households’ perceptions ... More>>

State Services Commission: Findings Of Investigation Into COVID-19 Active Cases Privacy Breach

Deputy State Services Commissioner Helene Quilter has today announced the findings of an investigation into a breach of privacy regarding sensitive personal information. The investigation looked into who or what caused the disclosure of the information, ... More>>

International Security: New Zealand Suspends Extradition Treaty With Hong Kong

The New Zealand Government has suspended its extradition treaty with Hong Kong and made a number of other changes in light of China’s decision to pass a national security law for Hong Kong, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters says. More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 


 

InfoPages News Channels