Gardening Programme Gives Fresh Look for Te Whare Oranga O Parakai

A raised bed garden built by NorthTec students, on the Sustainable Rural Development programme, is set to provide fresh vegetables and herbs for the kitchen at Te Whare Oranga O Parakai. It will feature two korus, a herb spiral and a bench overlooking the gardens. The first koru, now completed, consists of a 13-metre-long spiral made from recycled bottles - about 500 wine bottles and at least 800 beer bottles - enveloped with a concrete mix, then plastered with a sand and cement mixture.
The programme, the first to be based at Te Whare Oranga, is now nearing completion, and the winter vegetables previously seeded by the students are big enough to be planted into the new garden bed. The group still need to complete a propagation house and create a composting area.
The next Sustainable Rural Development programme will begin on 27 August and will run until 18 December.
Tutor Heidelind Luschberger says the plan for this programme is to plant a fruit orchard, and the students will be tasked with analysing the site, considering the layout of the land and the soil conditions, then designing a plan, selecting and planting the trees.
The group will also look at native plants and how to propagate them, choose the right plants for the conditions, and plant them around Te Whare Oranga.
Heidelind said: “Come and join the team, challenge yourself and learn something new. Everybody can gain from it – you, our community and Te Whare Oranga. Requirements for the course are that you have to be aged over 16, able to commit yourself to two days a week in class and to a project you do in your own time - and of course a love of gardening.”
She added: “The course is free and leads to a NZQA qualification in level 3 after successful completion, which opens new pathways to further education in this field.”
For more information or to enrol, contact Heidelind Luschberger on 021 0230 6465. You can also visit www.northtec.ac.nz or call 0800 162 100.

Gardening Programme Gives Fresh Look

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