Rewilding to Heal the Planet

FFF members went down to Motueka on 20 June to help Ollie Langridge with planting native trees. Ollie is one of the founding members of FFF Te Upoko o Te Ika, Wellington. Two years ago he bought 40 acres and he has put part of the land into QEII covenant to safe-guard it for perpetuity. Like many of us, he wants to do something to make a difference to heal the planet.

He is planting 3000 natives this planting season. Mollie Melhuish, Dolf van Asbeck and Francesca Pouwer helped plant over 600 trees in the 6 days that we were there. The total number of trees planted this season now tallies up to 2282!! Well on the way to the target of 3000. Ollie hopes to do this again next planting season. And we will be back. My partner Dolf and I, Francesca, were there in February as well to help repot seedlings. If you wish to volunteer send an email to

Francesca and Molly in action
Looking back on what we planted
Ollie Langridge on the meditation deck he has built in one of the gullies that has remnants of native bush.

Planting native trees like Totara, Kauri, Miro and Rewarewa made us feel wholesome and at peace. It is so worthwhile to take positive action. It recharged our batteries and helps to keep us going to lobby corporations like Fonterra to make the change to sustainable methods of production.

One of the slides projected on building in Midland Park where Fonterra Wellington office is located.

On the way back home, we stopped off at a micro forest near Nelson. It is the first tiny forest in New Zealand based on the Miyawaki method that prepares the soil and plants the 3 layers of locally sourced native species really closely together. On average the trees grow 10 x faster than is normal for reforestation and it very quickly enhances biodiversity. By having these in urban spaces we stimulate rewilding, improve our air quality, cool our cities and we grow environmental awareness to stand up for what we stand on. In the Netherlands this method has really taken of and it involves school children to help plant them. There are now 200 tiny forests across the Netherlands.

Colin Davis at the forest planted with grant from Nelson City City Council and help of local community
The burner to create biochar using wood but any natural waste can be used to put at bottom , with clay and organic fertiliser on top.
Note how much the plants have grown in just over a year!
Dolf looking down on the phenomenal growth.

The trees you see were planted in April last year and some are as high as 2 metres. As it happens, the land owner next door planted at the same time and you can see in the picture belowthe plants are barely above the planting sleeves.

Trees on neighbouring section

We were most excited to see the results for ourselves.

Molly and I would like to start up micro forest in urban environments involving school students and local iwi as part of our FFF action to combat climate change and take positive action.

It has been a wonderful week and we came back inspired.

Francesca Pouwer and Molly Melhuish

Why are we here?


  • the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern
  • the Minister for Finance, Grant Robertson
  • the Minister for Transport, Michael Wood
  • the Minister for Climate Change, James Shaw
  • the Leader of the National Party, Christopher Luxon

Mr Robertson, have you noticed us standing outside your office every Friday of late?


Since the petrol price is up, seize this moment to put in electric busses on priority lanes and subsidise e-bikes to go to work and get around our streets.

Act now to reduce the cost of living for struggling families and our emission levels from Transport in one go.

We have but a narrow gap from 2022-29 to reduce to net zero.

We hear about measures for Covid; measures to support Ukraine.

What we need most is fortnightly updates on what the government is putting in place to combat the climate crisis and create a fair, low energy, circular economy.


XR Aotearoa Event Wednesday 26 October 2021

by Francesca Pouwer

A number of us from FFF took part in the rolling action of dancing cows making their way around the capital in protest of industrial agriculture and its effects on the environment, animal welfare and human health.

After that we went to give moral support to fellow rebels who had glued themselves to steps at Parliament grounds all night as part of the Te Tiriti demands for declarative democracy. The protesters said to NZ Herald: “Our aim was to draw attention to Te Tiriti-based climate assemblies, which we believe is one of the only ways to genuinely address the climate crisis without further ignoring colonisation, capitalism, imperialism.” Read the full article here:

We started off with a fun event: disco dancing in front of the Railway station at 8.30 am to the commuter crowd’s attention and it was shown live on Breakfast TV with John Campbell.

From then on the focus was on the major culprits responsible for industrial agriculture in Aotearoa: MPI, Fonterra and Pāmu (Landcorp Farming Ltd).

At all three locations we requested that a representative come down to meet with us but no one came out. At MPI we were actually told someone would meet us but after half an hour we realised it would not happen.  On leaving ,we ‘posted’ a ‘massage’  through the massive glass doors in an act of rebellion. ( Video by glass doors of MPI)

At Fronterra we entered the hall and despite being told there was no public access the cows went ahead with their dance to let it be  known they are on strike and have had enough of being live milk machines for Fronterra.

( video of dancing cows in hall Fronterra on XR wellington facebook)

The Pamu event stays with me the most because it brought home to me the extent of industrial farming here in NZ. XR had invited environmentalist Angus Robson along and he provided the aerial photographs for a mud and cowshit  display assembled at the doorstep of Pamu.

(Two photos from gallery)

Angus has been on a mission to expose the horrors of ‘winter grazing’ but really it is Mud Farming. 

Greenpeace Youtube Video on Mud Farming:

The worst thing is Pamu farms are government-owned assets. So while the government is making all sorts of regulations to reduce environmental harm and ultimately stock numbers, they do not lead by example on their own industrial  farms.

Please sign the Greenpeace Petition ‘HEALTHY FARMING, NOT MUD FARMING’:

You’re invited to Imagining Food Futures (IFF) event

Invitation to IFF 'Imagining Food Futures'

A one-day workshop for creative rangatahi (that’s you) to come together and envision what
Te Whanganui-a-Tara’s food systems could look like by 2050 — the wilder and more
whimsical, the better!

When and Where?

20 Nov 2021
10 – 6pm
Innermost Gardens, Matairangi/Mt Victoria

We’ll also have:
– interactive installations
– delicious kai
– big fun!

There’ll be urban agriculture experts, artists, and speculative designers (future thinkers) there to guide the generation and communication of future food ideas. Decision-makers will arrive in the evening to hear about the day’s outcomes and meet our young changemakers over a BBQ futures feast produced by local chefs. 

The garden will be an in-context site for all of these groups of people to meet, listen, share, and potentially collaborate, moving ideas beyond this initial workshop. 

It’s shaping up to be a hugely impactful youth event. We’re looking for young people between the ages of 15 and 25 who are interested in: 

– community gardening and urban farming

– indigenous food sovereignty and climate action

– waste minimisation and creative reuse sustainability-focused cooking, foraging and mahinga kai

– eco architecture and urban planning (edible green spaces) storytelling for social change

Please RSVP via email to Alex!

Please note FFF Aotearoa NZ isn’t involved in organising this event, we are simply standing in solidarity with BGI, Grow Space Wellington and The Sustainability Trust.