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Monday, June 16, 2014

Community planting day at Auckland Grammar School, Sunday 22 June

The first community planting day at Auckland Grammar School (Section 1 on the map below) is the result of a unique collaboration between the Friends of Maungawhau, Auckland Council and Roseline Klein who first approached the school about their weed-infested grounds in March 2013.
By persistence and negotiation, Roseline managed to set up a weed removal programme and secured funding for native plants, with the help of Biosecurity officers in the council. In advance of the planting, several FoM volunteers (particularly Jean, Keith, Oliver and Alastair) have collected binloads of rubbish and bottles over a period of weeks. Jean remarks:
Not a pleasant job, but fascinating to see the amount of accumulated stuff, some of it positively historic, like ancient bottles - huge brown beer bottles, incredibly thick and heavy ones like Fanta and L&P bottles, flagons, green Barossa Pearl ones, and old rectangular ink bottles. Can't blame the current students as these things were out of production decades before they were born!

Guest blog by Roseline Klein

Over a year ago now, my friends Jen and Carl had a brilliant idea when giving birth to the lovely Abby. They asked their friends to celebrate Abby's birth by doing something positive for their community or for themselves instead of giving a material present. I thought about what I could do and realised that on my way to work, I was going past an area covered in weeds on Auckland Grammar School grounds, between Clive Road and the school's hockey turf and lower rugby field. This is very detrimental for the amazing Mt Eden just next to it, where volunteers from Friends of Maungawhau and great people from Auckland Council spend significant time maintaining the mountain and its native bush. But then as a school, AGS doesn't have the expertise to know how to best deal with the issue and understandably has other priorities. The community needed to help to make change happen. 


Section 1 – Pampas and moth plant seedlings.
17 May 2013

A year down the track, a joined weeding and planting project has been created between AGS, Friends of Maungawhau, Auckland Council and myself. Thanks to funding by Auckland Council (EIF) and Auckland Grammar School, weeding has been done on site in the past 8 months. Thanks to time and effort by Friends of Maungawhau, the cans and bottles thrown over time by people on the area have started to be collected.

The area is now ready to be planted with native bush, aiming at increased biodiversity, reduced weed issues and improved aesthetics for the enjoyment of all. How exciting! I would love for you to be part of it!

Our first significant milestone is the planting day on Sunday 22 June, 10am to 4pm.

500 shrubs will be planted on Section 1. The school's Environmental Committee and Communications team are advertising the day to parents. To make this day a success, there will need to be a lot of us. All help is welcome, yours especially!

If you feel like contributing to our beautiful Auckland and are free that day, please come along! It should be a fun day. If you know of anyone who would be interested, don't hesitate to share the invite.

I will send you more information closer to the date. For now, just rsvp if you'd like to join!

Many thanks,
Roseline Klein
027 512 4504

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