Charity Feature: Wilding Free Mackenzie
Purchases of Tipping Point 'The Woodsman' Pinot Noir, go toward a donation to our charity partner, Wilding Free Mackenzie.
We sat down with Haeleigh Turner, Community Co-ordinator at Wilding Free Mackenzie to learn a bit more about the important work they do to keep the beautiful Mackenzie Basin, wilding free.
What is a Wilding Tree?
The term ‘wilding tree’ is given to trees that spring up in places, usually in large numbers, where they are not wanted. In the Mackenzie basin, wilding conifer trees, known commonly as wilding pines, are a major problem.
What was Wilding Pines’ biggest success in 2022?
Wilding Free Mackenzie’s biggest success of 2022 has got to be our volunteer days. Over 300 hours were contributed by volunteers to clear 62 hectares of young wilding pines across five locations in the Mackenzie Basin. This included getting our first school group out in the field, which has been difficult with covid19 restrictions in recent years.
What was the biggest challenge in 2022?
The biggest challenge for us is trying to ‘mainstream’ wilding pine issues so they are as well understood as things like possums and covid19. When the negative impacts of wilding pines are well understood the National Wilding Conifer Control Programme is better supported, and landowners are more inclined to be proactive about removing wilding pines from their properties.
If left to spread Wilding Pines can significantly reduce ground water levels, hydro electricity production, land productivity, and native biodiversity, and dangerously increase fire hazard in rural/urban fringe areas. It is vital that wilding pines are removed wherever possible in New Zealand.
How can people help the Wilding Pine problem, even if they’re not based in the Mackenzie district?
- Get involved with your local wilding pine community group. Details at https://wildingpinenetwork.org.nz/community-groups/
- Landowners can remove unnecessary pine trees (plus Douglas Fir and Larch) from their own properties so seed-sources are limited and neighbouring properties are less affected
- Be smart about Christmas trees: Avoid transporting pine Christmas trees to areas where they don’t already exist, especially pristine natural areas such as our national parks.
- Dispose of pine Christmas trees responsibly at council approved green waste sites around the country. This will help to prevent spreading pine seeds to unwanted places.
- Consider using artificial or native Christmas trees instead.
- Purchase The Woodsman Pinot Noir by Al Brown and Tipping Point Wines 😁
In 2022, the $10k donation from Tipping Point went towards an equipment trailer for your volunteer days, have you got any plans for what you’ll use the next $10k for?
No specific plans at this stage, but it will likely go towards either another useful piece of equipment or wilding pine awareness-raising resources.
To find out more visit https://www.mackenziewildingtrust.org/