Creative connection to nature, garden & forest


Paitu Ngahere + Gardens

“Ko Paitu te awa e rū nei taku ngākau.”
“Paitu is the river that speaks to my heart”

Paitu is the name of our treasured awa / stream that flows from the ngahere / forest at our home. She is fed by springs all year around, her source beginning deep in the ngahere.
Her catchment area is untouched as it flows through the forest, emerging past gardens and fruit trees, where we have planted out what were once bare banks.
We mihi to her as we swim in her waters in summer and meditate by her side in winter. We are grateful to live alongside her.
The land takes her name: Paitu Ngahere.


Tina Aitchison

Tēnā koutou katoa.
Ko Paitu te awa e rū nei taku ngākau.
Ko Tina toku ingoa.

My name is Tina. I am blessed to live with my young whānau in a beautiful slice of heaven in the Far North of New Zealand.
I create art and work with plants in our forest and garden.


I have a background in graphic design, working as a freelance designer for 25+ years. I have always been creative, painting and drawing since childhood. I have been inspired to create seasonal, cyclic art in tune with our seasons, though discussions with my tamariki.

Gardens & Permaculture

20 years ago I attended a series of permaculture workshops and gratefully applied this knowledge to our gardens here at Paitu Ngahere and Gardens. We grow and preserve food in our gardens, saving seeds, feeding the soil naturally through home made compost and seaweed herb teas. We have planted over 200 fruit trees on our land and now able to pick seasonal fruit year round. It is a blessing to grow and work alongside nature, living from a sustainable focus point.


I had been called to learn rongoā for years, which was put on hold as I raised a young family. In 2020 kawakawa again whispered to me ‘It really is time for you learn about me!’
I finally listened and acted, and I was blessed to be able to attend a wānanga rongoā alongside a beautiful group of wāhine, through Te Waka Rākau. I thought I would be deepening learning about tikanga and karakia, but it was so much more than that. It was a coming home to deep understandings already felt. Connecting to the mauri/essence of the rākau/plant continues to be a a daily part of my life and brings much blessing and richness. I am grateful to my kaiako/teacher Joanne Hakaraia-Olsen and Luana Reiri for helping to tune more deeply to the whispers of the forest.


Continuing to heed the karanga/call, I was grateful for the opportunity to wānanga raranga amongst a local ropu of beautiful people through Te Whare Pora O Whangaroa. The journey continues, my ability  to work with kōrari/harakeke increases, as well as gratitude for kōrari’s teaching which extends beyond weaving. Thank you to our kaiako Liane Panui, Karen Smith, Robyn Tauroa, Sandra Heihei for teachings, patience and nurture as we wānanga.

All rongoā – native, sown, or wild herbs – are planted, harvested and prepared with karakia, intention, tikanga, respect, mihi and gratitude through each stage.

Thanks for finding out more about me and the reverence I have for our natural world.

Nature Inspired Art

Create a daily ritual, connecting your tamariki to th rhythm of our natural world with these New Zealand seasonal calendars. Featuring NZ art and te reo Māori month names.

Ngahere Connection

Herbs, balms and essences for body and mind.


Grow your own veges, fruit trees and NZ natives from seed.

Body Nurture

Balms and serums to nurture your hinengaro, wairua, tiinana / mind, body, spirit.