After a three month hiatus, the nursery group got back into action on Thursday 11 November. Since then, under Covid restrictions and guidelines a limited number of volunteers began the task of pricking out about 12,000 seedlings for the 2022 planting season.

On 11 November, 400 flax urgently needing a new home were put in either tubes or PB3s. As we had a watering problem in our absence, some of the Botanic Gardens’ raised mānuka and kānuka suffered from dampening off, so we were advised to prick them out immediately. So on 16 November, 1900 kānuka seedlings were put into T28s and on 18 November, 2040 kānuka were pricked out into tubes. Then we began on the mānuka and on 23 November, 2500 mānuka were put into T28s and on 30 November a further 2240 kānuka joined them.

Two men with seedling trays

The limiting factor was not lack of volunteers, time or potting mix, but the fact that the newly pricked out plants needed to spend two weeks in a shade house before being put outside in the hot sun, and we have limited shade areas.

However Ray has installed a watering system in the shade house extension so our capacity will increase soon.

We feel pleased to have made such progress in such a short time, in spite of all the limitations, and plan to have all the required plants pricked out by Christmas.

Susan Gibbings

Categories: Nursery