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As Aotearoa’s floriculture industry faces the need to evolve, one Far North grower and florist stands out as an early bloomer. Waipapakauri-based Kat Rodger is forging a forward-thinking path in a space often dominated by plastic, chemicals, importation, and waste issues stemming from single-use materials.
“Mum was always doing quirky little things like washing and reusing every plastic bag, which we do religiously now. I think all this exposure to nature and to thinking about the environment led me on this path.” Rodger began growing flowers commercially in 2020 and today operates Duncan Rd Creative, a business offering seasonal fresh flowers grown using sustainable and regenerative practices.
Rodger grew up in one of the Far North’s first avocado orchards in Kaingaroa with parents who instilled in her a deep-rooted love for nature. “I spent a lot of my childhood outside with my hands in the dirt, exploring and observing my surroundings. My Mum grew our own food, and we had a small farm of chickens, goats, cows, and pigs,” Rodger said.
Rodger said the beauty of the floristry industry did a good job of covering up its globally felt negative environmental impacts, and many florists were ignoring waste issues. “Behind the flowers are some disturbing practices.”