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Farming with Native Trees Workshop

Tanes tree trust was invited to facilitate a workshop on Farming with Native Trees, promoted and managed by Merrin Whatley, land management officer at Auckland City. The workshop was designed to inform local famers and lifestyle folk in the Mahurangi area of the potential for planting native species on their land. There were 25 registered participants with 17 on the waiting list. It was held on Matt Wech’s farm, a fourth generation property at Mahurangi which, amongst other features, has a number of hectares planted with manuka for honey production. We were represented by David Bergin, Paul Quinlan and Warwick Silvester in which I gave the TTT raison d’être and background to why plant natives trees, David led practical discussion and Paul gave a cameo on landscape. A field visit was rained out after 30 minutes but did give rise to very good discussion. The information was very well acknowledged with lots of excellent discussion. A very interesting discussion on managing bees rounded off a very successful day. Paul’s presentation on landscape and heritage was particularly well received and highlights values that we often take for granted. The discussions were often stimulated by David’s very practical suggestions and valuable insights.

I guess one can measure success as the number of new members who carried off their thick bundle of bulletins. Nine people signed up, that is 36% of registered participants.

Merrin informs us that the feedback from participants was excellent and there seems to be an appetite for this sort of field meeting and further workshops are anticipated.

By Warwick Silvester