Friends with the forest
More than 100 children from Henley School, and their teachers, parents and grandparents spent the day at Coronation Forests earlier this month, in an annual event organised by Nelson Forests Ltd.
The children planted tree seedlings, went on a guided conservation walk in an area of preserved native bush in the plantation forest, and visited a harvesting crew at work.
The annual visit tradition was established 60 years ago by the Forest Service to commemorate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth.
Though many of the boys’ main ambition for the day was to find and eat a huhu grub, the children were impressed with the effort required to dig a hole and plant a seedling on a slope and by the machinery – particularly the Waratah processing head – used by the Boar Logging crew.
Nelson Forests’ harvest planner Richard Kouwenhoven said the annual Coronation Forest school visits were an opportunity to show local children what forestry was about and also to encourage them to learn more about our native forests so that we can all protect and nurture those areas.
Kevan Buck Forestry Services’ Rex Marshall guided the children on their walk through the Conservation Grove.
He showed them how to identify trees, how to be more aware of birdlife and plant life in the native forest environment, encouraged them to taste honeydew and showed then how to untangle themselves from a plant known as ‘‘bush lawyer’’.
Dream job: Champion daffodil breeder Denise McQuarrie with husband Neil McQuarrie and Daisy the dog in her 40,000 daffodil blooms ‘‘field of dreams’’ at their Ngatimoti home