Treemendous times in Horsham Downs

A splendid planting time was had by all.   Pic:  Hamilton News
A splendid planting time was had by all. Pic: Hamilton News

More than 120 members of the Hamilton community attended a working bee on Saturday helping to transform the Horsham Downs Primary School with a Treemendous School Makeover.

Everyone got stuck in and planted more than 1000 native trees and shrubs, expanding on the school’s existing bush area, reports the Hamilton News.

The space now boasts its own microclimate and will attract more native wildlife to the school grounds such as tui and kereru:


“Students, teachers, staff from Fairview Motors Hamilton, Mazda New Zealand, Mazda Foundation, and the Project Crimson team, including special guest ‘The Bugman’ Ruud Kleinpaste, transformed the school’s grounds into an interactive learning space for students.

The school also held a competition, to see which students could design and build the best weta hotel, bug motel, bat house, and bird feeder.

Judging took place on the day and the winners’ projects now take pride of place in the garden. Students will use them to study the life cycles and habitats of indigenous animals and insects.

‘We’re so grateful to everyone who turned up and helped out on the day,’ says Julie Herbert, Enviro team coordinator and teacher at Horsham Downs Primary School.

‘Our outdoor area has been a significant work in progress for many years and the Treemendous makeover has been the most exciting project to date. The new learning space has created a strong sense of pride amongst the school community. We can’t wait to use the outdoor classroom, so students can observe, think, draw, and immerse themselves in nature.’

Ruud Kleinpaste brought along his weta friends and showed them to the students, educating them about New Zealand native insects.

Horsham Downs Primary School is the first school to receive a Treemendous School Makeover this year. Next is Havelock North Intermediate in June, Waikouaiti School in July, and Renwick School in August.”

The Treemendous School Makeover programme is a joint initiative between the Mazda Foundation and Project Crimson.

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Number 8 Network - a community website for the rural areas northeast of Hamilton, NZ, is run by Gordonton journalist/editor Annette Taylor.

2 thoughts on “Treemendous times in Horsham Downs

  • May 19, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    Well done Horsham Downs School, pupils, parents and sponsors, the new natives look really awesome, was there today watching two grandsons in the cross country event which saw all the children taking part in their annual event. Great to know the children are learning about so many outdoor aspects of education, plants, trees, wetas and a host of other critters and creatures, keruru and tuis and watching their hardwork growing and thriving. Great achievement.

    • May 21, 2015 at 9:19 am

      Well said Judy. And what a wonderful initiative!


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