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Grovetown Lagoon Restoration Project

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Newsletter 52

Published on Apr 6, 2022

Grovetown, back in the day, was previously known as Big Bush. The name was due to the large stand of mixed podocarp forest which once extended from Grovetown Lagoon and through the township and surrounds of Grovetown. Swamp Maire (Syzygium maire) was an original tree of the Big Bush, but very few have survived on the Wairau Plains.  Many years ago seed was collected from under trees in the Pukaka Valley.  The seeds were germinated, propagated and planted in the very swampy area of Maori Island opposite the Steam Wharf area. Some of these have grown (where few other trees grow) and are now setting seed of their own.  Dave Roxburgh, who propagates almost all of the plants in our shade-house, is seen in the photograph below collecting seed.  
 


 

Swamp Maire is a handsome tree with bronze-coloured foliage. We know it grew at the Lagoon along with Matai and Kahikatea.  Our trees have flower buds, attractive feathery white flowers, and mature berries, all at the same time, which is unusual.
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