Planting season is now complete for threatened flora projects

The planting season has finally come to end, with all of our threatened flora planted out at their respective sites this month. The above average rainfall this winter has allowed for later planting than normal but has also delayed planting in wet sites.

The Restoring Under-represented Ecological Communities project has been coordinating seed collection and propagation of rare and threatened plants in Swamp Gum woodlands of late. Over 2,400 plants of 28 species were purpose grown at Mimosa Farm Trees and Nature Glenelg Trust nurseries this past year to now be planted out at four remnant sites (covering 5 ha). A selection of planting teams including new and experienced volunteers assisted by ForestrySA and NGT staff, all participated in the planting days (commencing back in July). While undertaking this revegetation we also found a few gems previously unknown from sites such as Hackett Hill and Wandilo Native Forest Reserves. Aromatic plants like ‘native mint’ and ‘stinkweed’ were found growing happily in our restoration sites. Troy (from ForestrySA) can be seen here with one such find of Opercularia ovata (Broad-leaf Stinkweed). This ground cover plant was found in damp conditions and is considered Rare in the South East.

Troy and Tom looking at the small colony of the 'Broad-leaf Stinkweed' at Wandilo.

Troy and Tom looking at the small colony of the ‘Broad-leaf Stinkweed’ at Wandilo.

The planting of the Avenue Cassinia (Cassinia tegulata) has also been completed for this season with 550 individuals of 3 provenances planted out at four sites from Blackford to Avenue (mid to Upper South East) to ensure the dwindling populations at most sites can continue to prosper. We are hopeful that this currently above average rainfall year continues so that we are not required to water this year’s plantings – unlike the extra watering effort needed last year at various restoration sites. Although, with >90% survival in some instances, the effort to water was worth it!

Cassinia in flower at Avenue, photographed earlier this season

Cassinia in flower at Avenue, photographed earlier this season

We thank all involved for their time this season for helping us achieve some great results for our threatened flora.

The next step for Swamp Gum woodlands and the Cassinia is to ‘do it all again’. With seed collecting and propagation to provide new batches of plants already underway, all of which will be planted out at both current and new sites next year.

If you would like to be involved in the seed collecting, plant propagation and/or planting of these rare and somewhat unusual plants, please get in touch.

This project is supported by Nature Glenelg Trust and Natural Resources South East, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.