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Keep Manawatū green planting day for water quality

Manawatū Rugby, Higgins and Horizons Regional Council are joining forces at a Colyton planting day in August to keep Manawatū green and help improve water quality.

Players from the Turbos and Cyclones will be digging in alongside Manawatū Rugby management, Higgins and Horizons freshwater staff to put over 1,000 native plants in the ground.

Horizons freshwater manager Logan Brown says the plants are funded by a Horizons freshwater grant and will create a riparian margin along the Upper Mangaone Stream, a tributary to the Manawatū River.

“This will help reduce soil run-off into the stream and establish a rich habitat for native aquatic life,” he says.

“The plants will be spread across two properties through an area both landowners have fenced off to exclude stock thanks to 50 per cent funding from Horizons. With a combined planting and fencing area of nearly 1.5kms, they have made a solid contribution to improving water quality.”

Turbos head coach Peter Russell says the event is hoped to be the first of an annual planting day between Manawatū Rugby and Horizons, with future events being open up to the public to join.

“The theme of ‘keeping Manawatū green’ aligns with the jersey colours of the Turbos and Cyclones,” he says.

“Community support for the jersey has been outstanding for many years and this day is our way of showing, as professional sports people, our awareness of climate change and insuring the future of the Manawatū district.”

Higgins, as sponsors of Manawatū Rugby, have provided planting tools for the day and Mr Brown says it’s great to have over 40 people involved.

“We have a huge planting season each winter – with over 160,000 plants going in this year alone – so many hands make light work of projects like this. We know the landowners also appreciate the help and everyone involved can walk away knowing they’ve had a positive impact on the environment here.

“For anyone else who has a stream fencing or riparian planting project in mind and would like to learn more about Horizons’ freshwater grants, please get in touch with our freshwater team by ringing 0508 800 800.”

For more information about the planting work Horizons does across the region follow their #plantinourregion campaign on social media or see www.horizons.govt.nz

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