Output Tool Technical Report 2
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Retiring Farmland into Ngahere

February 2023

The purpose of this report, fact sheet and information video is to introduce successful low-cost native planting methods which can be used as an educational resource for landowners, agribusiness and forestry advisors, regional councils and native forest restoration projects. Its application has the potential to reduce the cost of ngahere (native bush) establishment by some $20,000 per ha. This equates to a potential saving of $10 billion if even just half of the 1,000,000 hectares identified as highly erodible pastoral land were planted back into native forest using this method.

Many landowners across Aotearoa have a desire to restore significant areas of marginal pastoral land back into native bush (ngahere). We wish to offer a technique known as the Tīmata Method which has been shown to significantly reduce challenges associated with affordability, supply of trees and labour, while retaining the ecological end economic benefit of establishing ngahere.

The fundamental principles of the Tīmata Method are:

  • careful land preparation,
  • use of easily propagated native nursery crop species,
  • cultivation of plants in small-size containers known as “forestry-grade”
  • fewer trees per hectare than conventional guidelines

Deployed as a whole, the Tīmata Method lowers cost and makes more efficient use of time and labour resource.

The Tīmata Method which in Māori translates to begin, start, kick-off or commence – initiates the natural processes that are known to restore ngahere.

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