On Friday 6 November 2015 Wairakei Estate hosted a planting day as part of the ‘propagation project’ initiated by CEO Chris Parkinson, which acts as a sponsorship opportunity for the school.
We invited Hilltop School and Liston Heights Retirement Village to the Estate to take part in the first project of its kind for the Estate. We set up a planting day which involved Class 13 from Hilltop School being taught how to take the plants from root trainers to pots by the retirees from Liston Heights. These trees will be planted on the estate in 2016. The plants that were potted were Flax, Ribbonwood, Pittosporum and Lacebark.
The day was a huge success and we will look at making this a part of our sponsorship strategy. We ‘purchase’ the plants from the school when the plants are ready for planting into the field, aiming to create up to $1 per plant worth of value to the school.
“We are very excited about the opportunity to bring together youth of Taupo from Hilltop School and the older, wiser and more experienced people of Liston Heights retirement village for a commercial solution which benefits all. The knowledge transfer between the elderly and youth, the sponsorship opportunity and the commercial solution for Wairakei Estate…. its win win win for all involved.” Chris Parkinson said.
On Wairakei Estate, every farm that is developed has its own signature tree for the avenues, road side copses and single tree plantings. The Flax, Ribbonwood, Lacebark and Pittosporums, are used when developing wetlands, riparian and retired areas. In the near future we will build an onsite purpose built nursery for the development of young plants that we purchase in for the estate and look at expanding this project as a part of our community outreach and sponsorship.
The day was a great success on all accounts; one of the measures of success was the conversations. Some of the Hilltop boys chatting on their way to the bathroom about the year that some of the residents were born and other conversations were asking the residents what they did in a day –“ It was great to hear the children asking lots of questions and being genuinely interested in their experience and lives”. Another measure was how quick they got the plants into their new pots! 4 hours was estimated for the 1000 plants to be potted however the team did it in 2 hours so that left us with time to watch some of the new Wairakei Estate DVD and take a walk through the epiphany gardens on site here at the Wairakei Estate office.
Thanks Hilltop School and Liston Heights!