Aucklanders are being asked to take care of new trees planted on Maungakiekie/One Tree Hill.

A grove of pohutukawa, totara, kiekie and other natives will be planted on the summit during Matariki next winter.

The last tree to grace the summit -- a 125-year-old pine -- was removed in 2000 after being damaged in chainsaw attacks.

Auckland Council parks manager Mace Ward told Newstalk ZB he was hopeful people would treat the new grove of trees with respect.


He said it was a harsh enough place for trees to grow anyway, and the council and Maunga Authority were asking people to look after the trees.

A single tree will stand on its own at the summit by 2026.

The plan was announced at the summit of the maunga by the Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority in partnership with Auckland Council on Monday.

Mayor Len Brown said the maunga was an "iconic symbol" and Aucklanders had been waiting for a tree to return to its summit for 15 years.

"The loss of the tree was a symbol of what divided us. The return of a tree is a symbol of what unites us," Mr Brown said.

Tupuna Maunga o Tamaki Makaurau Authority deputy chairwoman Christine Fletcher said the replanting has been a long time coming and would be celebrated by all Aucklanders.

"I vividly recall how devastating it was to see our beloved icon, the one tree of Maungakiekie/One Tree Hill, come down following discontent around the Treaty settlement process for the Tupuna Maunga ... we are beginning a new chapter in the history of Tamaki Makaurau's ancestral mountains."

Maungakiekie-Tamaki councillor Denise Krum, whose ward includes Maungakiekie/One Tree Hill, welcomed the news that trees are returning.


While her preference would have been for one tree immediately on One Tree Hill, she "acknowledges the logistical reality" of the need for a grove at this point.

The chequered history of the tree on the prominent cone has been a sore point in Auckland for decades.

Settlers reportedly cut down the first native tree at the summit in the 1850s.

Sir John Logan Campbell replanted a grove of totara and pine trees in the 1870s but only one Monterey pine at the summit survived.

In 1994, Maori activist Mike Smith took a chainsaw to the pine out of frustration over the Government limiting Maori Treaty settlements to $1 billion.

Relatives of Smith's later attacked the tree with a chainsaw in 1999.

The chainsaw used in the first attack was put up for sale on auction site Trade Me in 2007, but later withdrawn after complaints, and the rotting remains of the Monterey pine were put on Trade Me just last year before the seller was charged with theft.