Tauranga garden converted to promote biodiversity

We need your help!
Heather Loughlin’s urban woodland garden in Matua has been featured in NZ House & Garden magazine. But after a visit from New Zealand’s ‘Bug Man’ Ruud Kleinplaste, during last year’s Art & Garden Festival, Heather was inspired to undertake a major overhaul of her garden and turn it into a haven for insects.

“When we first bought this property over 30 years ago it was a mess but I do remember seeing insects. But then we bulldozed the backyard to make way for a new garden and without realising it, we lost them,” says Heather. “It’s very sad what we’re doing to them.”

Having explained the important role insects have to play in our biodiversity, Kleinpaste was able to provide Heather with a list of plants favoured by insects. She immediately set about creating a native haven for bugs – removing the pretty winter roses and shifting her fence back to make way for planting the best possible food for stick insects and weta.

“I thought a lot about what Ruud said, and his message about the importance of biodiversity is huge.  We’re killing the insects and we’ve got to turn this around – it’s the best thing I’ve ever done.”

In order to populate her garden, Heather is looking for at least 50 weta and 50 stick insects, ideally from within Tauranga. “I’ve asked everyone I can think of, perhaps if I reach out to the members of TMBC, they might be able to help me.”

If you find any stick insects or weta that could be re-homed in Heather’s garden, please contact Diane to make arrangements.