Photo: Anna White

2018 and beyond

Grateful thanks again to our many supporters out there, who recognise how vital our natural environment is to our own personal well being, and are prepared to put their efforts into giving nature a helping hand. Truly, it is important work. Last year plants from our nursery revegetated another 15,000 square metres of our Peninsula, and our pest control programme was successful in ridding Awhitu of innumerable possums, rats, mustelids. If it has fur and four legs, it doesn’t belong in our kiwi bush. The battle continues!

Mahanihani Restoration takes a Big Step Forward

65 helpers have just put another 2000 plants in the ground at Mahanihani! Fantastic teamwork and MANY thanks to everyone who joined us in those majestic surroundings, helping out so willingly, with lots of smiles and spadework. The weather gods were exceptionally kind, we had perfect conditions. All in all - a wonderful morning, ending appropriately with one of Leonie’s very special lunches (venison casserole on the menu no less!) at the historic Awhitu Central Hall. Here are a few photos - but they can only show a small part of the landscape and our team of helpers, as the areas we were planting in were so extensive. Huge thanks to each and every one of you who are making this great project happen.  The concensus was ‘what a memorable day we’ve had….’

Mahanihani Restoration Continues!

From 10am for a couple of hours on Sunday 11 June we will be continuing our restoration work in this historic site -  we’d love you to join us and help beat our previous record of planting 2,000 plants in one morning!  You will be assured of stunning views :-). Please note that access to the main planting site is quite steep, although there is a smaller secondary site to plant in if anyone cannot manage the hill climb. Volunteers will need good strong footwear, warm clothing, gardening gloves and if possible bring a spade. Also water for your own needs. We will be there, whatever the weather on the day.

To reach Mahanihani, follow the signs up the Awhitu Peninsula to the Manukau Heads Lighthouse. Parking is limited at the Mahanihani site and if possible, and you are coming with friends, we would love you to carpool.  (There is plenty of street parking in Matakawau if you can carpool from there.)  If you are driving right to the site, please follow the Awhitu Landcare directional signs for paddock parking on the day, and be considerate when parking so we avoid disrupting visitors to the Lighthouse.

Warming nourishment will be provided as a thank you to volunteers after the planting at the Awhitu Central Hall (just off Manukau Heads Road, opposite the Church). Again, please take care and be considerate when parking - our Awhitu roads are very narrow! We expect to be planting for around two hours, maybe a bit more or less depending on the number of volunteers. Look forward to seeing you there!

Photo - the Mahanihani Restoration Planting site

Welcome visitors

Andrew Bayly, Hunua MP and Chester Borrows, Whanganui MP and Deputy Speaker of the House, visited us yesterday. They were interested to view maps of the Peninsula and learn about just how many protected areas of bush there are (more covenants than anywhere else in Franklin). We also explained about how the community had voted - over 10 years ago - to designate Awhitu Peninsula as a ‘possum control area’, and all the efforts from our Pest Control Co-ordinator Pete Shepherd, and Awhitu Landcare volunteers, to continue to achieve this. The sun shone and our magnificent Peninsula was looking its finest, so we are sure our visiting politicians enjoyed their trip. Their comments about our plant nursery and our pest control work being ‘most impressive’ were heartening. Take a look at the results Nursery Manager Sigrid Sharplin and her fabulous volunteers have been achieving in recent months - wow.  Equally as impressive (but not nearly so attractive!) are the dead mustelids…. THANK YOU Pete Shepherd and your pest control helpers, for all your tireless hard work tramping those endless steep hills and rough gullies….

Meet new friends

Our community plant nursery at Matakawau hasn’t missed a beat over summer, with a wonderful number of volunteers helping out – thank you people! Lending a hand in the nursery is a great way to socialise and meet new friends. Every Tuesday and Thursday morning (9.30 to 12.30) we welcome anyone able to donate a few hours of their time. If you are unfamiliar about what happens in a nursery, don’t worry, we’re on hand to help - there are jobs to suit every capability. We’re a friendly lot and we’d love to see you there one day. Sowing a tray of seed and watching it grow into hundreds of healthy young plants, ready to grace the Awhitu environment, is a truly rewarding pastime.


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