Sunday, January 23, 2011

Flood Zone in the Gully

A visit to the gully after a very wet night and day (the region has a flood alert in place) gave a good indication of the flood level on the gully floor. Click on the page heading on the right of this page to view the photos.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Good results. Ivy seriously sick

The ivy was inspected today 22 days after cutting and painting the stumps. The ivy has showed complete die back of all the cut plants. We are confident now to get a team in to finish the job.
The top photo is before.
The bottom photo is after 22 days.

26th January a team finished off this job.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Some goals for 2011 (in no particular order)

1/ Weed control and under planting of the gully slope at the end of Sexton Road. There are already established canopy trees Kauri, Totara and Miro with existing understory plants of Mapou, Pate and several Coprosma varieties. The area is badly invested with ivy and aluminium weed.
2/ Get an all weather track up the gully from the foot bridge. This is going to be a necessity if we are going to run a trapping program for animal pests starting this winter as we are hoping.
3/ Form a trust and then apply for some funding.
4/ Keep the weeded area free of weeds and expand the weeded area.
5/ More planting
6/ Record the existing flora, assess the stream to determine it’s ecological health, set up a bird census program and do a survey to see if there are native bats in the gully (need a track for this as well).

A Summary for the year that was, 2010.

Far more was achieved than ever expected in the three months from the first working bee on 6th October. This is a credit to all the people involved.
We put in 122 man/woman hours on the Wednesday working bees and 30 man/woman hours on the three Saturday working bees.
This amounted to a substantial clearance of Honey Suckle vine which released the existing native flora so that it will re establish under the shade and protection of the willows.
A flood proof bridge designed to float up and down again (photo top) has been built and put in place across the creek so there is now easy access to the area we are working on without going through the bog!
10 x 1.5m high Kahikatea supplied by Council were planted among the Astelia in October and all look to have established well with strong new growth evident.
287 understory (shrubs and small trees) plants were obtained from council and planted out in the damp areas in December. These were unwanted plants from the HCC Nursery. Because of the urgency of getting them into the ground some species were planted in unsuitable locations and have died or are not thriving. However, others are doing well.
From the same source we have 8 varieties totaling 153 plants that we are holding over to the autumn. These will be planted in the correct location for each species so the survival rate should be much better for the ones not suited to boggy ground.
90 Kahikatea (photo bottom) and 84 Kowhai seedlings have been potted up to grow on for planting out in two to three years time.
Members have donated for the purchase of established potted trees. The varieties selected were 4 x Swamp Maire, 3 x Puketea, 1 x Kahikatea. These are all canopy trees that thrive in swamp with potential to grow 25 to 30m. They have been purchased but yet to be collected and planted.

And that was the year that was!

PS. Don't forget if you double clip on the photos they will enlarge. Clip on the back arrow returns you to your page.

Experimental Ivy control

On the gully at the end of Sexton Rd is the source of the ivy contamination. The ivy is growing up large Phebalium trees and seeding. The birds are then eating the seed and spreading the ivy to the rest of the gully.
*I cut and painted with Glyphosate the upper and lower stumps of the ivy but, because of the size of the plants, I am not at all sure this will work. I get the feeling that the ivy is getting a good bit of its nutrient for the host trees.
*I have done about 6 metres and will not do more until I know the treatment is successful.
If anyone would like to see it then drive down Sexton Road. It is directly at the end just to the right of the Totara.

Pheasant shooting,Gardening and Restoration

Here is a link to Wayne Bennett’s little story on his blog attached to his forestflora website. An entertaining read and a good point made at the end.