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Wānaka Water Project - Riparian Planting

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In 2018 we partnered with WAI Wānaka to lead and commence riparian planting for the Wānaka Water project which is funded under the Ministry for the Environment's Freshwater Improvement Fund (FIF). 

Our involvement means we will be planting 24,000 plants over the five year life of this project and we are running this alongside our community plantings which remain our core focus.

We continue to use plants eco-sourced from within this region to ensure everything we do supports the traditional biodiversity of the region. Local nurseries, Matukituki Natives and Pukerau are providing plants where we cannot meet the demand.

We have developed site selection criteria to determine the suitability of potential locations against the prime objective of water quality improvement, and an MOU between parties for selected sites. Such sites include those administered by our traditional partners QLDC and DOC, as well as some stream sides and wetlands on private land that feed into the rivers or lakes. Aspiring Environmental, have been developing Land Environment Plans with farmers around the lakes and are helping identify potential sites, and QLDC is helping identify areas for mitigating urban runoff impacts.

Te Kākano staff and volunteers are propagating plants of suitable species, and organising the planting and initial maintenance of these.  This work will be ongoing and where the numbers are beyond the Trust’s scope we will contract out plantings. Where a site is on private land, we will most likely use contractors to do the planting.

We believe that delivering the Wānaka Water Project helps us further enhance our ability to improve the biodiversity of the area through connecting people with the land.

Project Sites on Public Land

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Glendhu Wetland Wildlife Reserve


This is a great opportunity to enhance a precious wetland in this DOC wildlife Reserve.  This wetland is responding well to no longer being grazed and we have many suitable plants to help it further.


Location: On Mt Aspiring Rd before you reach Glendhu Bay. You will see the DOC sign and a stile into the reserve  - see our project site map here.


Planted: year 1, 823; year 2, 613; year 3, 500


DOC, Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka.



Hāwea River


This site is on QLDC land by the Hāwea River track, downstream from the Camphill Rd bridge. The site falls under our riparian planting contract with WAI Wānaka. The aim is to help filter water that is draining into the river from nearby dairy operations. It is great that the site is also supported by funding and time given by Upper Clutha Tramping club members who are offsetting their driving kms with planting at this site.

On the dry side of the track we are planting hardy plants such as totara.

On the river banks we are planting kānuka, olearia varieties including one that is local to Hāwea.

Location: on the true left of the Hāwea river downstream from the Camphill Rd bridge  - see our project site map here.


Planted: Year 1, 185; Year 2, 167; Year 3, 200


QLDC, Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka, Upper Clutha Tramping Club Members.


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Wishbone Falls

This is a special site by the Wishbone Falls near Raspberry Flat, in the Matukituki Valley.  It is QEll Covenanted and we

 are recreating the wetland around the stream, to improve water quality and to increase the wetland habitat.

The Wānaka Water project is contributing the plants, and Fish & Game and the Aspinalls are helping with fencing.

Planted: year 1, 280; year 2, 603; year 3, 300


Aspinall family, Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka, Forest & Bird, Otago Fish & Game.


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Albert Town Lagoon Outfall

Planting at this site will help improve the quality of the lagoon water before it flows into the Clutha River (Mata-Au).

Planted: Year 1, 115; Year 2, 175


QLDC, Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka, Albert Town Community Association.


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Grandview Creek, Lake Hāwea

Planting at this site will help improve the quality of the creek water before it flows into Lake Hāwea. Planting is done by volunteers from the community under the guidance of Guardians of Lake Hāwea.

Planted: year 1, 110; year 2, 616;


Hāwea Community Association, Guardians of Lake Hāwea; Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka.


Penrith Reserve

This project started in 2012 and as it meets criteria it is getting a boost from the FIF funds. There is more information on our projects page here.

Planted: year 1, 165; year 2, 517, year 3, 238


Wānaka Water project - WAI Wānaka, Penrith Resident Association

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Plant Numbers on Private Land Project Sites

Alpha Burn Station: year 1, 820 plants ; year 2, 900 plants

Spotts Creek, Cardrona Valley: year 1, 775 plants; year 2, 1000 plants

Lake Hāwea Station: year 1, 713 plants

Crystal Pool, Mt Aspiring Station: year 2, 116 plants

Cardrona Valley Farms: year 2,  800 plants

Bottom Bay, Glendene Station: year 2, 300 plants

West Wānaka Station: year 2, 1000 plants

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