We are preparing for how the effects of climate change on Auckland’s environments will affect gardening, the way we work and the experience for visitors. Many of the ways we work now (see sustainable horticulture practice) are a solid foundation for this work. We anticipate adaptations to the way we select plants, consideration of the impacts on threatened plants (conservation) and the impact of plant diseases and new weeds (biosecurity). The timing of our work seasonally may have to change as rains come later in the autumn. The use and management of water and stormwater will become bigger issues. We also need to consider how staff and volunteers work in hot summers with high UV levels during much of the working day. The experience of visitors may also be affected by changes in our climate.
One example of how future climate is being considered is the selection of long-lived plants, such as trees. We need to consider the suitability of trees to both environmental conditions now, but also those within its expected lifetime (which may be hundreds of years).
Auckland Botanic Gardens is a member of the Climate Change Alliance of Botanic Gardens which aims to grow and sustain a global movement of botanic organisations that take action to protect and enable adaptation of botanical landscapes in a changing climate.