Otamatea HarbourCare’s hero

Zoe Roadley — far right — and fellow volunteers love getting their hands dirty

At 91 years of age, Otamatea HarbourCare Society’s most senior volunteer, Zoe Roadley, says she’s always liked ‘grubbing in the dirt’ at the society’s Paparoa-based native plant nursery.

Mrs Roadley became involved about two-and-a-half years ago, after planting days were carried out on the Roadley family farm at Batley.

“The farm has had planters once a year for the last two or three years and when they finished their day’s work, we put on morning tea and lunch for them.

But, digging and planting are beyond me now.” she said Along with other volunteers, Mrs Roadley travels weekly to the nursery in Paparoa to process up to 1,500 native plant seedlings including flax, coprosma and manuka. She says she has learned a lot about native plant varieties, and values the importance of protecting the shores of the Kaipara Harbour for future generations “It’s going to take a while, we have a very big harbour.”

Mrs Roadley plans to continue volunteering for as long as she is able, and is encouraging anyone interested in the work of the society to get involved by helping out at the nursery or at planting days. Contact Mark Vincent on 021 0829 8037.


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