Saturday, April 20, 2024

Kerikeri pear tree in focus for national award

The oldest surviving exotic tree in Aoteoroa New Zealand, located in Kerikeri, has been nominated for Tree of the Year 2022 by Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga.

Rākau o te tau / Tree of the Year Aotearoa is not about the most beautiful tree, but about the stories and heritage that connects us to our trees, Far North District Council said in a statement.

The over-200-year-old Kerikeri pear tree is thought to be a Williams bon chrétien (good Christian) pear and is the sole survivor of 185 fruit trees and grape vines which are the first recorded exotic trees planted in New Zealand.

When Hongi Hika granted European missionaries some land on the site of the Kororipo pā near Kerikeri back in the early 1800s, the first thing they did was plant food crops and orchards, including the pear tree.

The tree is on land owned by Far North District Council and is a notable tree within the Operative District Plan and within the draft District Plan. It can be viewed at Kerikeri Basin, down by the stone store.

Learn more about this local treasure or vote for the Kerikeri Pear tree as Tree of the Year 2022 at #1 Kerikeri Pear Tree | Rākau o te tau / Tree of the year Aotearoa.

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