Pharazyn Reserve Revives

Waikanae School pupils report on their unique conservation project

Some of the  most active conservationists on the Kāpiti Coast are to be found at Waikanae School – and this is proved by their native planting project in the Pharazyn Reserve at Waikanae Beach.

Two of our special correspondents, Caci McFadgen and Thomas Couchman,both from Room 11 at the school, have given us their reports of a planting on Arbor Day.

Planting at Pharazyn  Reserve.

By Caci McFadgen
Room 11, Waikanae School

School years 4,5 and 6’s went to Pharazyn reserve last week to plant some New Zealand native plants. In Maori, the reserve use to be called Te Harakiki swamp. (The flax swamp)

After being introduced to the history of the ponds, the Year 5 and 6 children from Waikanae School  were shown the different kinds of plants being planted.

Then the children had to get the plants out of the plastic bags

Caci McFadgen tends a plant

and put them into the holes that had been dug by the members of Forest and Bird.

Ariana Mulvey, a Year 6 Waikanae School student said: “It was so hard getting the plastic bags off the plants.”

Jessica Glover and Tommy Milne

The children put the soil in with their foot or hands. When the children were finished they washed their hands. Then most of children looked at the photos, from 2007 to 2011, of previous plantings that Waikanae School children had taken part in. The children were there for 45 minutes.

The only mishap was when the children went back to school on the bus, a child got stung by a wasp. Mrs Fearon, a Waikanae School teacher, took her to the Waikanae School office.

As for me: “I loved the trip, and I planted 5 plants!”


Thomas Couchman ‘s report

Students had to be at school early because the bus taking them was leaving at about 8:55am.Before they actually started planting a man started talking to the students, telling them what plants they were going to plant.

He told everyone that about 10 years ago they decided to get all of Waikanae and Paraparaumu’s sewage and put it in big holes at the Reserve. But they decided not to because they thought that the smell would spoil the Reserve.

On our visit, the students had to plant 1300 plants. When the children ran out of holes to plant them there were a few adults there to help out and dig some more holes.

Not many students brought along gardening gloves so when they had finished planting they had to go to a truck down at the end where there was a box with a tap and water in it. Many students complained that it was too cold!

There was a long board leaning on the other cars and all the photos were on there. The photos dated from 2007 because that is when they first started planting there.

Sadly the tornado which came through Waikanae last year damaged a lot of trees at the Reserve, especially palm trees.  It ripped out many of the plants which students had planted last year.

Many trees fell over in the tornado.  Some survived but they were so shabby that they had to be cut down anyway.

Waikanae School pupil Jason remembered from last year that there were some frozen dead animals. He put up his hand this time to ask about it. But there weren’t any this time.


Jemma Tye and Sydney Barlow