I made the same trip in January. Nothing really changed except the weather. Instead of being 30 degrees it was about 15 degrees and some of the trees weren't green anymore.
The bus broke down before we left Auckland but that was really the only event that was exciting. I tried to sign up to go snapper fishing but there was no boat running. Instead of going fishing I made some calls to the hostel in Kerikeri that helps find guests work in the orchards. From the information I got I was not too confident that I could get a good position quickly. It sounds like the best picking is finished and packing jobs are few and far between. As a result of this information I have decided not to go to Kerikeri. I will instead go back to Auckland and try to find work elsewhere. There has to be a hotel that needs workers for either food and beverage or housekeeping. I just need some short term work so that I can afford to have as much fun in Australia as I have in New Zealand.