Integrated Catchment Management

Native plant trials in the Sherry River – how are they going?

Natives (and weeds) on Riley´s farm – Sherry River
Natives (and weeds) on Riley´s farm – Sherry River

Native plant riparian enhancement trials were established in October 2005 in the Sherry River catchment. Results to date (1 year after planting) were explained at the Sherry River field day in February 2007. In terms of weed control treatments there was no significant difference in survival rates of plants one year after planting. In terms of growth,mulches gave better height growth but were more expensive than chemical control. The mulches (weedmat and carpet) were found to only be practical on flat smooth surfaces and needed holding down. Seedling quality was found to be key factor for good survival and growth in the early years. The species that covered the ground surface quickly to prevent weed establishment were Hebe, pittosporum, karamu and flax.

Lisa Langer and Nick Ledgard from ENSIS together with Barbara Stuart (NZ Landcare Trust) and the landowners of the Sherry River catchment (Nicky and Paul Bavin) are involved in the restoration trials.

Up–date – July 2007
There had been good growth over the last year with some plants now over 2 m. Once again there is frost damage to karamu (Coprosma robusta) and to a lessor degree on koromiko (Hebe salicifolia) and kohuhu (Pittosporum tenuifolium). These species will recover come spring. Also measured but not part of the trial were koromiko, flax (Phormiun tenax), toitoi (Cortaderia richardii) & purei (Carex secta). The flax, toitoi & purei were all growing well. These should help stabilise the bank over the long term.

Key Contact:

Image - Nick Ledgard Nick Ledgard  EmailSend email to nick.ledgard
Phone: 03 364 2949
forestry, plant trials