Here's a few of the community projects Gulf Trees has had the pleasure of working with.
If you have a community project that we can be part of please contact us to discuss.
Grafting course 2015
Images from a grafting course run by Gulf Trees on 27th Sept 2015. 12 participants were shown how to do a whip-and-tongue graft, a bud graft and a cleft graft. Each participant took away with them 2 grafted apple trees. We will run this course every Spring.
Apple Trees in Tetley Neighbourhood
" Thank you on behalf of future generations of happy apple eaters."
Rob Morton of Gulf Trees gave us FREE apple tree root stock to be planted in the Tetley Neighbourhood verges. We planted mulched and fertilised them. The Local Board also gave us many other fruit trees which we planted, mulched and fertilised.
Rob showed us how to graft the apple trees. They were all grafted and have taken brilliantly!!
Today we removed the grafting bandages and splinted the new grafts. Now they need more mulch after the next rain. If it gets very hot and windy they may need a bucket of water. Could we all take responsibility for the care of the trees nearest our homes?If you need any help please ring, text or email us.
Lynda & Lindsay Jeffs - 18 Dec 2015 -
Summer Living -Waiheke Gulf News story 2014
Growing our own food has become increasingly popular with the increasing awareness of where our food comes from. Rob Morton of Awaawaroa's Gulf Trees explains that it's easy when you know how.
Rob Morton of Gulf Trees and his partner Hanne have been running their plant nursery at Awaawaroa for over 20 years. The couple has had a long time to discover what grows well on the island and how to get the best out of different species.
Rob is an advocate of sustainable living and says growing food-producing plants is increasingly important. "I couldn't live in a place that didn't produce lots of food. With a productive property you can live like a king. "I want to know how my food is grown and I want to enjoy growing it. I always feel cheated when I buy produce from the supermarket because I know it is overpriced, lacking in taste and nutritionally suspect," he says.
For those tackling their first productive garden, he suggests taking an inventory of what (if any) fruit trees or vegetables are already in place. A lot of homes on Waiheke have fruit trees going wild at the back of the garden somewhere, so if you've got one tucked away that has been neglected, start looking after it, you'll be glad you did when it starts to bear fruit.
Then it's time for a big clear out. Get rid of weeds, such as pampas grass, ladder fern and honeysuckle. "These have to go, and don't even think of using herbicides," says Rob. "Poisonous chemicals and good food don't go together. I believe gardens - especially food-producing gardens - should be managed organically. The best way is with a good quality sharp spade. If your back isn't strong, employ some young person; it should only take a day or so to get back to a clear section."
The first thing to think about is a vegetable garden. This is should be as big as you can manage, as this is where your daily food will come from, but be realistic. If you can't face a big project try starting small. "Put your vegetable garden in the best position you've got. It should be sunny, sheltered and close to the house so that you can nip out a get a few leaves halfway through cooking," says Rob. "If you can't grow lettuce, silverbeet, beans and tomatoes then you're not really trying."
Good topsoil is a must for a productive vegetable garden and a compost bin is the cheapest way to start improving your soil. "Very little vegetation or food waste should need to leave a property."
Rob's recommended trees for the island include olives, subtropical fruit trees that are prunable and productive such as feijoas and guavas, and vegetable garden staples such as potatoes, lettuce and tomatoes. "With perhaps 10 productive olive trees, you can be self-sufficient in olive oil. It doesn't have to be a luxury product. It is a basic commodity that anyone can grow, and we are lucky on Waiheke that we are able to get olives processed by one of the local presses. Olive trees should be kept pruned to about 4 metres high. Plant them about 3 metres apart and in five years or so you should be in business.
Whatever you decide to plant in your edible garden, investing some time, money and effort at the beginning will soon reap rewards, and nothing beats the taste of your very own vegetables grown naturally in your own backyard.
Put your vegetable garden in the best position you've got. It should be sunny, sheltered and close to the house so that you can nip out a get a few leaves halfway through cooking
Delivery for Rakino Island 2013
Images from a delivery of eco sourced native forest to Kevin Wragge from the Rakino Community Group via DOC's "Hauturu" from the old Matiatia wharf.