A sum­mer of gar­den DIY


Palmer­ston North res­i­dents want­ing to make bet­ter use of their back­yards and gar­dens are in for a treat.

The city’s eco ad­viser Nel­son Lebo is host­ing a series of DIY work­shops for house­hold­ers.

The first two ses­sions, ‘‘Hot com­post­ing for the se­ri­ous gar­dener’’, have al­ready taken place. The third, on mak­ing fly screens from pre-pur­chased kits, is to­mor­row af­ter­noon.

‘‘The work­shops are about show­ing there are real, sim­ple ways for peo­ple to up­skill.

‘‘The com­post­ing work­shops were not only pro­mot­ing ef­fec­tive ways of mak­ing use of house­hold food scraps and gar­den waste, but also to get peo­ple in­ter­ested in a project to col­lect and make use of cof­fee grounds from shops in The Plaza.’’

With the cre­ation of high qual­ity gar­den com­post as the lure, Lebo was hop­ing to re­cruit cof­fee grounds col­lec­tors.

‘‘Cof­fee grounds are high in ni­tro­gen, and are al­ready in a fine form. It’s turn­ing ‘waste’ into a re­source and keeps it out of land­fill.’’

The re­main­der of the city coun­cil-spon­sored work­shops will be held at Re­claimed Tim­ber Traders, 4 Matipo Lane, off the end of Konini St.

With tools pro­vided, an af­ter­noon work­shop for kids fo­cuses on mak­ing weta ho­tels.

Any­one with an in­kling to raise their own chooks can find out about chicken trac­tors.

‘‘The mo­bile chicken coop pro­vides shel­ter as well as safety from cats. Shift it ev­ery day and the chick­ens mow and fer­tilise your lawn with eggs as a bonus.’’

Later in Fe­bru­ary, there’s a gar­den fur­ni­ture build­ing work­shop, em­ploy­ing what Lebo calls ’’rough car­pen­try’’ to make planters and raised wooden gar­den beds out of ‘‘tran­si­tional tim­ber’’. Again, tools will be pro­vided, but there will be a cost for the re­cy­cled tim­ber used.

At a fur­ther work­shop, Lebo will demon­strate an alt-en­ergy so­lar de­hy­dra­tor.

For those who miss any work­shops, there will be a wrapup ses­sion that re­vis­its the main points at the end of the series in Fe­bru­ary.

Lebo is even happy to dis­cuss com­post­ing as well as sec­tion drainage on site if res­i­dents want to make an ap­point­ment.

En­quiries about any of the ses­sions can be made through the Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil.


City eco ad­vi­sor Nel­son Lebo will be shar­ing his ‘rough car­pen­try’ skills to make ro­bust gar­den fur­ni­ture.

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