Hollard Gardens Family Corner becomes spray free

Hollard Gardens has introduced sawdust as a natural solution to control weeds in its popular children’s play area, eliminating the need to use potentially toxic sprays in this high use area.

The Taranaki Regional Council, which manages Hollard Gardens, researched a range of natural alternatives and found sawdust to be a non-toxic material that is easily accessible and just as effective at controlling weeds as chemical sprays.

 “The Family Corner had a particular problem with Onehunga weed which has little prickles that aren’t nice for bare feet,” says Greg Rine, Taranaki Regional Gardens Manager.

 “Using sawdust is a great way to eliminate chemical use in public spaces and gave us the opportunity to create more play spaces too by changing the contours and placing new rocks.”

 With increased education around the effects of pesticides and herbicides there has been growing concern around their use in public spaces, which has seen other councils in Auckland and Christchurch adopt similar methods to make playgrounds and parks spray free.

 The Family Corner at Hollard Gardens includes a popular playground and free barbecues.