Campus poppies make an impact
There was such a great response to poppies on campus last year, Massey University library staff have decided to replant the concourse gardens again.
Sheeanda McKeagg says in 2015, not content with just an indoor display of knitted and crocheted poppies, library staff decided to create woven harakeke (flax) poppies to display in the university gardens.
‘‘We managed to get around 300 made and displayed in various gardens in front of the library. There were so many positive comments from students and staff, and there were even people passing by while we were installing them, who shed a tear or two.
‘‘They stayed in the ground for a month, rain, hail and shine and still looked vibrant. We then thought this year we would try and double the number of harakeke poppies.’’
Not that Sheeanda has counted them all, but she hopes the total they planted out on Monday is around the 600 mark.
‘‘They are looking stunning, and plenty of students have taken photos of them, and asked what it is all about – especially the foreign students. the reaction has been great.’’
Both times, they had assistance from Ria Waikerepuru who taught her colleagues how to harvest, prepare and weave the flax.
During March and April, library staff also approached students to help with the weaving.
‘‘A colleague and I then dyed them.’’
Some of the poppies are red, others plain, and some purple.
‘‘Apparently the purple coloured ones represent the animals that were involved in the war.’’
Palmerston North’s City Library has also embarked on a harakeke poppy weaving project, holding Friday morning weaving workshops alongside knitting sessions.
The knitted poppies will be incorporated into a wreath to be laid on Anzac Day, while the dyed flax poppies will be installed in The Square this week.
A garden of red , purple and plain harakeke poppies have sprung up in Massey University gardens around the library and concourse.