Waiheke locals can now access free, nutritious food through an online food map that locates hundreds of fruit trees planted with funding from Waiheke Local Board.
The Waiheke Food Map was launched by the Waiheke Resources Trust (WRT) in October this year and provides an interactive map of foraging spots on publicly accessible land across Waiheke.
WRT Internships Coordinator Livné Ore explains that most of the foraging locations on the map are based on the 2014-16 Love Our Fruit Trees project.
“Almost 1000 locally sourced fruit trees were planted on publicly accessible land thanks to the Waiheke Local Board funding the project, and Home Grown Waiheke Trust who initiated it,” Ore says.
WRT, who receive regular funding from the board, took over the management of Love Our Fruit Trees project for its final year.
“Fruit trees were planted in public places, particularly on people’s berms outside their properties. These ‘tree guardians’ then committed to care for the fruit trees with the aim to have an abundance of fruit available free to the community,” Ore explains.
All trees were sourced locally and grown on Waiheke and included apple, plum, pear, guava, fig, banana and feijoa. WRT supported tree guardians with advice on choosing planting sites and pruning to ensure the trees had the best chance of surviving.
WRT started the food map project in 2021 with interns working on the mapping components, and design elements. The map now displays all mature, fruiting trees from the Love Our Fruit Trees project but also includes additional foraging spots on Waiheke, including community gardens.
“We hope that by sharing this information, both Waiheke residents and visitors will make use of these amazing local resources and boost the motu’s food resilience,” says Livné.
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