To fully appreciate the Burford’s value in restoring landscapes, it is important to understand what it, pardon the pun, ‘superseded’.
Traditional native plant restoration often involves the planting of nursery-raised seedlings, which is generally expensive, labour intensive and prone to varying plant survival rates. The Burford was custom made for the sole purpose of sowing the seeds of native trees and shrubs directly into the ground with the original design barely changing in over 30 years.
In New Zealand, direct seeding trials using the Burford Seeder were undertaken by a small team within DOC across multiple sites, properties and landscapes in Canterbury, Otago and Southland. Each of the 20+ sites were selected to test vastly different and diverse environments, ranging from pasture competition, bone dry conditions, waterlogging, and pest invasions.
The direct seeding trials were designed to test the machine with a range of NZ species, conditions and landscapes to formulate a recipe for success. This included how best to prepare sites, collect and process seed, and adapt and refine the direct seeding methods and maintenance to NZ conditions.