Planter box dilemma raised at board meeting

Taieri Community Board member Phillipa Bain continues to search for a solution to the maintenance...
Taieri Community Board member Phillipa Bain continues to search for a solution to the maintenance of 20 planter boxes in Mosgiel. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

A search continues to find a solution for an unwanted gift scattered across Mosgiel.

At a Mosgiel-Taieri Community Board meeting in September last year, members agreed to pay Greenhouse Nursery co-owner John van Delft $2000 to maintain 20 large planter boxes in Mosgiel for a year.

The interim measure was designed to give the board enough time to find a party to take responsibility for the boxes.

The boxes were given to the board by their previous owner - the Mosgiel Business Association.

At a board meeting in Mosgiel last week, board member Phillipa Bain, who is leading the project, said she was continuing to search for a sustainable solution.

Board deputy chairwoman Joy Davis suggested she approach Presbyterian Support Otago and ask if the boxes could be maintained by pupils on its Youth Grow Garden Centre work programme in Normanby.

Board chairwoman Sarah Davie-Nitis said a solution was needed soon because the boxes would need to be re-planted in August.

Mrs Bain said if the board found a party to pay to maintain the boxes, the plan was to raise funds by approaching businesses to sponsor the boxes.

Mrs Davie-Nitis said if a solution could not be found, the town of Lawrence had offered to take the boxes for use there.

At the meeting, Mrs Davie-Nitis read a response from the Dunedin City Council after residents approached her with concerns about overhanging vegetation.

The response stated private landowners were required to maintain vegetation, such as hedges.

A complaint to council about vegetation would spur a site visit and if a problem was identified a letter was then sent to notify the property owner of the requirements to maintain it.

If no action followed the first letter, a second letter was sent stating the failure to maintain the vegetation would result in council maintenance contractors doing the work and charging the property owner for it.

Mrs Davis said the board had received seven nominations for its Celebrating Local Excellence on the Taieri project.

The project, led by the board, was designed to recognise Taieri people who have achieved excellence in their field and brought credit to the area.

The seven nominations include a sports person, a scientist and a horse, Mrs Davis said.

Nominations close on February 28 and an induction panel - Mrs Davis, historian Ron Palenski, athletics coach Raylene Bates and former Otago cricketer and Taieri College principal David Hunter - would meet on March 4 to make a recommendation for the board to consider.

Inductees would be celebrated by way of an installation in a central Mosgiel location.

SHAWN.MCAVINUE @thestar.co.nz

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