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Published: 2016-06-29 00:00:00

Finishing touches in the form of extensive restoration planting are being carried out at Grahams Creek, Tairua with more than 13,000 eco-sourced native plants taking root.

This is part of the comprehensive flood mitigation works programme due for completion at the end of July.

Pupils and teachers from Tairua School were so keen to get to get involved in the planting they approached Waikato Regional Council's catchment management officer Rob Corkill. 

They and their supporters have helped put in 1000 natives. “It was a great effort the Tairua School team put in as well as a heap of fun. It was fantastic to see the enthusiasm of those involved, as well as a great opportunity for our team to partner with the school to deliver environmental education in action,,” said the council’s Coromandel zone manager Tonia Clarkson.

“This native planting will be a big asset to the area and we are now in discussions with the school about future learning-by-doing opportunities at the site.”

Contractors are expected to finish the remainder of the planting this week. The planting consists of 12 species that are found in similar coastal wetland and riparian habitat on the Coromandel that includes low-growing sedges to taller shrubs and trees such a cabbage tree, manuka, pohutukawa, karo and ngaio.

The flood protection work is progressing well despite challenging weather conditions, Ms Clarkson added.

“The restoration work forms a key part of the overall project as it was important to the Graham’s Creek working party members that environmental improvements as well as flood mitigation was achieved. We recently finished raising the stopbank on Manaia Road and the concrete for the inlet structure has been poured, so we are very close to completing the new flood protection scheme.”

The work is designed to mitigate flood effects for people and properties.

“Our thanks to Tairua school for supporting this work and for their positive contribution to this project. Our team was impressed with the kid’s knowledge of restoration planting, a real credit to the school and community,” said Ms Clarkson.