Community spirit is alive and well in Pirimai, Napier, if the first planting day at the Cross Country Drain is anything to go by. The event, organised by the Pirimai Residents’ Association in collaboration with Hawke’s Bay Regional Council and Napier City Council, attracted a group of around 130 adults and children, plus two dogs.
Approximately 1500 trees and shrubs from Napier City Council, NZ Landcare Trust, and Hinewai and Cam Ormsby, plus others donated by Plant Hawke’s Bay and local churches, meant for a very busy morning, and resulted in around 50% more planted area than originally planned.
The drain, part of Napier City’s stormwater infrastructure, has long been a target for improvement by Pirimai residents. Last year, in collaboration with the Pirimai Residents’ Association, the Council designed and constructed a walking and cycle track along its 4km length to the waterfront.
The new plantings are just the start for beautifying the area and transforming it into a community asset; residents hope for a name change in the near future to cement the drain’s role as a leisure area.
This project is supported by Biodiversity Hawke’s Bay’s community facilitator, Dr Belinda Sleight, who has provided project management expertise to keep the project moving forward. “This is a great example of achieving biodiversity gains from a mixed-use area” says Dr Sleight. “The plantings have been designed to improve public amenity, whilst conforming to the Council’s requirements for stormwater egress, public safety and low maintenance.
If you’re looking for a bit of community collaboration, koha and kindness, then look no further than a community planting day! Planting season is in full swing, with many community members donning gumboots and picking up spades to get plants into the ground while the mild weather and intermittent rain provide an ideal growing environment.
Check out Biodiversity Hawke’s Bay’s events calendar for the next events in your area - https://www.biodiversityhb.org/what-can-i-do/join-an-event/.
5 August 2021
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