It only took a matter of days for Fairton School’s lizard garden to have its first resident.
The lizard garden was created on the piece of land behind the school, owned by Talley’s Fairfield Farms, that is being transformed into a nature reserve.
With the help of the Kanuka Mid Canterbury Regeneration Trust, Fairton School is transforming the piece of land into a dryland regenerative planting site.
The site was first planted in October last year followed by a second planting in April and then the lizard garden was constructed last week.
Fairton principal, Mike Hill, said it has been a fantastic teaching tool for the students, with hands-on learning about ecology and conservation.
He said it is also “creating a space the whole community can make the most of”.
“It’s looking really good and after the planting on Friday we already had our first reported lizard sighting from two students [on Monday],” Hill said.
Trust co-chairs Claire Rushton and Emma Bush and their newly appointed community connector Kim Wall were on site to help with the planting while trust members Val Clemens and Edith Smith provided a talk on lizards.
The project is part of the Kanuka Trust’s Exploring our Footprint programme which Ruston said is aimed at building relationships between young people, their communities and the environment.
The site is divided into sections with an open space in the middle, which can be used as an outdoor classroom.
Talley’s Fairfield liaison officer Kelly MacDonald said the company “is delighted to have the opportunity to help out with this native planting area”.
After a year of Covid disruption, trust chair Rushton said it was great to be hitting the ground again.
The Fairton site being just one of a number of projects the trust has under way across the district, and Rushton said they are lining up at least three more to be started next year.
- Jonathan Leask