Resources for Groups

These resources are useful for community groups working throughout the catchment of the Ōpāwaho Heathcote River.

Site of Ecological Significance

The Christchurch District Plan includes the Ōpāwaho Heathcote River as a Site of Ecological Significance.

Site Name: Heathcote River and Tributaries
Site Number: SES/LP/25
Summary of Significance: The Heathcote River and Tributaries SES supports representative assemblages of indigenous flora and fauna including several at-risk species, and contributes to an important ecological network/linkage and migration route for migratory species.

Site Significance Statement in City Plan

Map of Christchurch Sites of Ecological Significance

Tree Policy

The work of community groups within the catchment will often involve the planting and/or removal of trees.

It is important that groups are aware of the CCC Tree Policy.

Tree Policy

In particular, be aware of the following policies:

1.4: Within sites and/or adjacent to sites of ecological significance (SES) … we will strengthen and enhance existing indigenous biodiversity and ecological resilience by planting only eco-sourced native species except where other species are necessary for specified reasons. An ecologist should be consulted prior to any planting and maintenance being undertaken.

1.9 For every tree removed a minimum of two new trees will be planted with the projected canopy cover replacing that which is lost within 20 years (additional planting may be required).

There is also important information in the Tree Policy about Tree planting, Tree replacement, Community planting, Commemorative trees, Ecological improvements, Removal of trees and Vandalism.

Planting Guide

Here is a special document prepared by Colin Meurk, and designed entirely for use in Canterbury.  It not only includes lists of suitable plants and where to place them, but also lists the 10 steps to take in planting and restoring a waterway for natural character.

Christchurch City & Lowland Canterbury Streamside Planting Guide


Restoration often requires the removal and suppression of weeds.

A slideshow of a presentation by Nicholas Head, Senior Ecologist at CCC about weeds in the Ōpāwaho Heathcote River, and what can be done about them.

Weedbusters: an interagency initiative aimed at raising awareness of weeds and supporting individuals in actively controlling weeds

Restoration Calendar

You can have your workdays and planting days listed on the OHRN Restoration Calendar.

Just contact Malcolm Long:

Where's it happening?
The Laura Kent Workgroup enjoys a covivial cuppa after their monthly work morning.

Community Group Liaison

Genevieve is our person for liaising with community groups within the Network. She can assist with advice, practical assistance, updating information on our website and contact with the CCC Urban Park Rangers.  If Genevieve does not have the answer to your question, she will be able to put you in contact with the person who does.

To contact Genevieve, email:
Genevieve Long
Community Group Liaison
Genevieve has a background in music education and a passion for growing things. She has lived by the river all her life and patrols its banks daily.

Urban Park Rangers

There are currently only two Urban Park Rangers who are specifically assigned to working with community groups, although a couple more have been promised. These Urban Park Rangers split the whole of Christchurch between them so treat them well – they are great people who do their best to help groups despite being overwhelmed by demands on their time and resourecs.

Resources & Research Info

OHRN maintains a list of current and/or significant resources and research reports that have been published over time by CCC, ECan and others.  These provide important background information that Community Groups may wish to understand.

Link to other resources and research information

Canterbury Maps

Interactive map of Canterbury with a wide range of selectable layers to display.