Research activities offer a platform to foster collaboration and strengthen ties with industry partners, academic and scientific institutions.
We work with a range of organisations and institutions to achieve our research goals. Research outcomes provide valuable information to organisations to support political decision making, ecological activities, product delivery and best practice advice.
Our plant collections are also a very valuable resource. All plant records are held on our database (IrisBG) enabling us to find where they are in the garden, and also if they are wild collected. These collections are important for genetic studies and other research.
Examples of research and our partners
- Plant and Food scientist Rob Beresford test the field susceptibility of Lophomyrtus cultivars to myrtle rust using plants that were grown at the Gardens.
- An ongoing project between ABG and University of Auckland (UoA) to investigate how to create natural meadows, with support from Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust (MBCT) and the Friends. The first year of this trial was conducted by Masters student Curtis Lubbe (2015), continued by summer student Andre Bellve (summer 2015-2016) and in 2018 Masters student Olivia Rooke-Devoy carried on the meadows work. Students were supervised by Dr Bruce Burns. Hear our curator, Bec, talk about lawn alternatives and growing a meadow.
- Plant collections used to study fire ecology of New Zealand plants through PhD by Azhar Alam and supervised by Dr Tim Curran at Lincoln University (2017).
- A joint project between ABG and Manukau Institute of Technology (MIT), with support from Manukau Beautification Charitable Trust (MBCT) for Danielle Cipperly’s compost trial (2015), and Matthew Savage and Julie Hubrich's tomato trail (summer 2016-17).
- Kauri dieback research is funded by the Ministry of Primary Industries. We work together as a team to combat kauri dieback. Partners include the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Department of Conservation, Auckland Council, Northland Regional Council, Waikato Regional Council, Bay of Plenty Regional Council and Tāngata Whenua. Hear our curator, Bec, to learn more about kauri dieback.
- Robyn Simcock from Landcare Research investigates the functionality of green roofs and trialing suitable native plants for green roofs. This is an ongoing research project. Learn more about green roofs with an interview from our curator Bec.
- Plant & Food, led by Frances MacDonald, regularly visit the Gardens and assess the impact of an incursion of a parasitoid on native caterpillar fauna. This has been an ongoing project since 2014.
- A joint project between Auckland Council Biosecurity, Landcare Research and Nursery and Garden Industry Australia (NGIA) in finding a sterile Agapanthus cultivar. Check out the Trial Garden to see the plants we are testing for their sterility or listen to our curator, Bec's, radio interview on plants that jump the garden fence.
- Ivan Chirino Valle from the Bio-Protection Centre at Lincoln University is conducting Trichoderma research in our nursery, supervised by Dr Robert Hill (2015).
- Margaret Stanley and Kelly Booth, from the University of Auckland, are building up a seed collection of native seeds for teaching purposes and as a research reference tool. They regularly collect seeds to add to the collection. This has been an ongoing project since 2014.
- PhD Matt Denton-Giles from Massey University used our extensive Camellia species collection to genetically test for their resistance to camellia petal blight. You can read more about Matt's research in his published paper Ciborinia camelliae (Sclerotiniaceae) Induces Variable Plant Resistance Responses in Selected Species of Camellia (2012).
- Simon Williams et al. from the University of Waikato used our collection of manuka cultivars to test their levels of nectar. You can read more about their findings in their published paper Annual, and Individual Variations in the Dihydroxyacetone.pdf">Regional, Annual, and Individual Variations in the Dihydroxyacetone Content of the Nectar of Ma̅nuka (Leptospermum scoparium) in New Zealand (2009-2010).