Many hands planting at Lake Areare

Department of Conservation —  09/12/2014

By Jane Hughes, Partnerships Ranger in Hamilton

For Lake Areare’s last planting day of the year, the support was so strong we weren’t sure if we had enough plants!

Lake Areare.

Lake Areare

It started taking on a life of its own when, instead of the two car loads expected, two bus loads of Fonterra staff showed up for a planting day.

Fonterra staff out planting trees at Lake Areare.

Chelsea from Fonterra enjoying the day

It was a whirl of spades, flying dirt and smiling faces for a couple of hours, and then it was time for lunch.

But there was no time for DOC staff to waste—we were still brushing off the crumbs from lunch when several carloads of school children turned up from nearby Taupiri and Ngaruawahia Schools.

They were full of enthusiasm and fond memories—one little boy went running off as soon as he could to see how tall the trees he planted last time had grown!

DOC staff and volunteers enjoying lunch.


The Auckland Fonterra crowd enjoyed the morning shift so much that they stayed for the afternoon session as well!

All the DOC staff agreed it was really good to interact with the Fonterra staff, who had come from the  Auckland, Hamilton and Te Rapa offices.

School children helping with the planting of trees and plants at Lake Areare.

School children helping out

Everything had falling into place. The bigger the crowd, the quicker the plants got into the ground, especially with this Fonterra crowd – they were really focused.

The children worked hard and planted all their allotted plants before heading off, muddy, tired, happy and proud of their work.

Some of the volunteers at Lake Areare.

Some of the volunteers at Lake Areare

The planting day ended with lots of smiling faces as we all surveyed our work, the stacks of empty pots and the planted area.

Everyone really enjoyed the day and were looking forward to the next one.