Hawke’s Bay Regional Council has supported the local planting of over 268,000 trees, shrubs, flaxes and grasses this financial year.
Around 85% of the plants are natives, planted for riverbank protection on the Heretaunga Plains and in Central Hawke’s Bay, and to support the restoration of Ahuriri estuary, Lake Tūtira, and Whakaki, Wairoa, Council said today.
The remaining 15% of plants are young Poplar and Willow tree stems, known as poles, that are used for erosion control, shelter belts, livestock shade and drought fodder on private farm land.
Hawke’s Bay Regional Council Chair Hinewai Ormsby says: “This is an amazing effort by the Regional Council in partnership with community groups, landowners and iwi.
“What is particularly pleasing is that the large majority of these plants are new plantings, with a smaller proportion being replanting to fix cyclone damage.
“Of particular note are the number of Poplar and Willow poles we have planted this season with over 35,000 poles planted to help prevent erosion in the region. This is quite remarkable given how damaged our Pole nursery was after the cyclone.
“We are also very pleased that our native plant riverbank protection trial at Ngatarawa has continued to show promise. The initial 37,000 native plantings were under a meter of water for over a week and have survived well,” she said.
A further 7,000 native plants in August will add to the trial, said Chair Ormsby.
“These plantings are supporting our recovery as a region and are a critical part of building environmental resilience to future climate events. We are very pleased with this overall result and look to build on it next year,” she said.