Join our mailing list to receive the 2019 event programme
92 High Street, Blenheim
0800 627 527
We have successfully managed to raise a whole generation of New Zealand kids in almost complete disconnect with nature. If we are going to restore our habitats and lower carbon emissions, we need to know how to plant a tree, shrub or ground-cover; we need to understand the value of biodiversity, wetlands, forests, gardens, and the power of these landscapes to sequester carbon and provide ecosystems services for everything that lives.
But it doesn’t have to be sombre and serious. We need to learn from nature and all the organisms that are part of nature, to get the best ideas for the way forward. As gardeners, parents and grandparents we are brilliantly placed to take the lead, and help our young New Zealanders gain ‘nature-literacy’. Now imagine we get teachers on board who are able to teach outside: we could get the complete curriculum in a garden, a park, a forest.
Green Gardeners of the Future is for gardeners, biological science lovers and for teachers; I’ll do an intro with some Q+A and take you for a walk… and mix in some biomimicry, science and (of course) bugs! Because they are the best teachers we have.
In a world currently dominated by serious problems such as climate disruption, changing land use patterns and declining biodiversity, we need to ensure we are reacquainted with the operations manual of planet earth. Who’s Who will teach you to identify the plants and critters we encounter in the landscape, parks and gardens, helping us detect exotic interlopers (biosecurity!) but also allowing us to encourage the ‘goodies’ and discourage the ‘baddies’.
This afternoon workshop starts with an overview of the so-called pests and disorders, with an illustrated parade of our beneficials. Then we go outside for a walk and use a pretty clever smart phone tool to help us identify the various organisms we’d like to know more about. This workshop is for gardeners, nature nerds and educators.
It would pay to download the app i-naturalist on your smart phone (get a username and password) before the workshop. This app is linked to the web-based program NatureWatchNZ that you can install on your PC. But don’t worry, the workshop will still be informative without it.
And on Sunday morning I’ll be running two workshops aimed specifically at kids, so come and join me on the Great Kids’ Bug Hunt! Kids are naturally fascinated by small critters, especially when they bite or sting! But for me it’s the stories of these little beasties that kids can identify with. Let’s go and explore Churchill Glade to see what we can find in old rotten logs, under leaf-litter and on the soil. Of course I’ll take my trusty companions along so everyone can have a cuddle with a shiny beetle, a weta or a rather large spider. See you there! Please note that children under 14 need to be accompanied by an adult (only one ticket required) and that numbers are strictly limited.