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Source: Whangarei District Council

This page contains a news story about our annual Pohutukawa Coast native plant give-away scheme that runs in July 2020. Plants are available from 6 July while stocks last.

Updated: 30/06/2020 5:01 p.m.

​“It is time to get back to nature, get our hands dirty and do our bit for global warming by planting some plants. But not any old plants. These are FREE plants,” says Council’s Technical Officer Spencer Jellyman.

“Having endured the drought this summer and survived COVID-19, it is time for some good news,” he said as he announced this year’s Pohutukawa Coast tree-giveaway.

“It may be a month late, but Whangarei District Council’s favourite give away is back in July. 

“If your garden is your happy place and you like the sound of free native plants, the Pohutukawa Coast Programme is for you. Whether you live in a rural area, or are a city dweller, play your part in creating a more diverse natural environment. Plant your free plants and be part of this popular programme.

“As the name suggests, the programme was set up to help re-establish young pohutukawa trees along our coastline. Now we have expanded it across our District, evolved to providing habitat and food for our native birds, bringing the lovely bird song your back yard.

“Each year the popularity of the programme continues to grow. This year we have had to increase the plant numbers to cater for the demand. You can be sure the 4280 plants we are giving away will go fast so you need to be quick,” Mr Jellyman said.

Whangarei District Council Parks and Recreation Manager Sue Hodge said after 30 years of the programme the total number of trees distributed is 78,040. The young plants are especially grown for Council by Tawapou Coastal Native Nurseries at Tutukaka. The mix of native trees and shrubs are suitable for coastal locations, rural or urban properties, wetlands and hedges.

Pohutukawa, Puriri Renga, Titoki, Kaka Beak, Native hibiscus, Kohekohe, Cabbage tree, Flax, Hebe diosmifolia, Griselinia littoralis, Melicope ternate, Kowhai, Renga Lilly, Kauri, Olearia furfuracea, Karo, Pseudopanax lessonii, Hebe stricta, Coprosma repens, Knightia exselsa, Hebe parvifolia – Some of the native plants available


 “There is a limit of two plants per ratepayer or Whangārei District resident to ensure they are distributed evenly. If you represent a large community group, you can leave your contact details and if plants remain at the completion of the programme then more plants can be made available to you,” she said.

Whangarei District Council Parks and Recreation Department and the Northern Branch of the Royal Forest and Bird Society will assist with the distribution of the trees and shrubs, as they have done in the past. The programme’s plant distributors are all knowledgeable and helpful, and will be happy to assist you selecting the right plant for your situation.

If you would like to take part in this exciting project, please contact one of the distributors and arrange to pick up your free trees. Contact details for our distributors will be available from the 6 July on Councils website or Facebook page.

Our Facebook page

Plants are available from 6 July.

Whangarei District Council would once again like to thank everyone who has made this year’s Pohutukawa, Coast Programme possible. Special recognition goes to the volunteer distributors who provide this valuable service for the community year after year.

For more information, please contact Whangarei District Council Parks Technical Officer, Spencer Jellyman on 09 430 4200 extension 8844.