Thursday, April 10, 2014

Our kowhai seeds have grown

We are very excited to announce all our kowhai seeds are growing. They have all sprouted and we now have seedlings. It is tricky to grow native trees so we thought we would share how we did it just in case anyone wants to grow their own kowhai.

What is a kowhai tree? A kowhai tree is native to New Zealand. What is native? Native means is grows in New Zealand and was first to grow in New Zealand. Why is it called a kowhai? Because in Maori kowhai is yellow and the flower in a kowhai tree is yellow! Kowhai flowers are smooth and delicate with different shades of yellow. What does the trunk of a kowhai feel like? The trunk is the part that holds the tree up and the bit where the branches come off. It feels firm and rough.

1. Scrape the kowhai seed against the sandpaper until there's a crack in the seed.
2. Place the cracked seed in a jar of warm water.
3. Wait until 2 days and then the seed should grow fat.
4. Take the seed out and place the seed in a garden container full with dry soil.
5. Poke your finger in half way down the dirt and place the seed in there and then bury it in the dirt.
6. Pour half a cup of water on it until it is damp.
7. Wait patiently for two weeks and your kowhai seed will sprout because of sun, water and care.
Instructions written by Neesha

A kowhai tree has leaves and flowers and pods and Room 8 was planting kowhai seeds.
1. Crack open the pod.
2. Make a hole in the soil.
3. Put the seed in the soil.
4. Water the seed and just a little bit of water.
5. Put the plant in the sun.
Instructions written by Gemma

What's a kowhai tree? A kowhai tree is a tree that has big yellow flowers and that is native to New Zealand. This tree is a deciduous tree because in autumn the leaves fall off.

1. Peel the pod until there is a little seed.
2. Sand it until you see a tiny yellow bit.
3. Plop the seed into a jar with warm water for two days.
4. Wait patiently until it grows twice the size.
5. Bury the seed in soil and put in some water and after that place it in the sunshine. It will grow bit by bit but it takes a long time.
6.Remove the plant outside to water each day and keep it in the fresh air.
7. Bring the plant inside over night because its too little to survive in the cold night air.
Instructions written by Henrietta

What is a kowhai tree? Well let me think. Oh yeah I remember it is a native tree to New Zealand. Ok I will tell you the steps to grow your own kowhai tree.

1. Break the pod and take the coating off.
2. Pick up the seed and put it in a safe place and put the soil in a pot.
3. Drill a hole in the soil with your finger and get your seed.
4. Plop the seed in the soil and spread the soil over the hole.
5. Sprinkle a little bit of water on it every day.
6. Take the pot inside when it is night and when it is day bring it outside.

Instructions written by Teague

Our success criteria for instructions was to have our steps in order so the reader can follow them, number each step and begin each step with a verb (a word where you a doing something). 


  1. Wow! Your kowhai seedlings look great! We have not been so lucky and need to plant some more!!

  2. WOW your kowhai seedlings look fantastic they have grown very fast.

  3. Those look amazing!! I am a New Zealander living in the US. I just grew a Kowhai seedling using your instructions. It is very exciting to have a tree from home :-)

  4. Wow this is so great and exiting! I love Room 8!