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‘Amazing effort’ as Waikanae Stream rejuvenation continues

A community clean-up along a 130-metre stretch of Waikanae Stream on Sunday has been described as “an amazing effort”.

Twenty-seven volunteers spent two hours collecting rubbish, weeding and planting a variety of native shrubs at the stream area running alongside Alfred Cox Skate Park in Grey Street.

The clean-up is part of a long-term community project to clear kikuyu and allow flax and shrubs to thrive.

Team members planted 10 harakeke/flax donated by the Women's Native Tree Project Trust and four karo trees donated by John Hudson.

Native plants help filter water in the stream from any chemicals from the surrounding area.

Five bags of rubbish were also collected, clean-up organising team member Jason Akuhata-Brown said.

Most of the rubbish was light materials like food wrappers and plastics that were blown in the wind and got caught in the shrubbery.

Team member Jill Hudson said since 2012 a variety of native plants had been planted on the banks of the stream and the weeding helped avoid the smaller shrubs being over-run.

“Native plants are now getting so big that they are shading out the weeds, plus, being winter, growth is slower so we didn't have to deal with the mass of weeding we see in spring or autumn,” Mr Akuhata-Brown said,

“We were impressed with the amazing effort put in to thoroughly clean up the full length of the skatepark plantings.”

Several organisations have supported the project over the past decade.

Mrs Hudson said one more public clean-up would be held later this year.

CLEAN-UP: Volunteers Norma Miller (left) and Jane Luiten of the Women's Native Tree Project Trust clearing weeds from plantings next to Waikanae Stream on Sunday. Picture by Glenda Smith