COVID has had a serious impact on WCS working bees – all have been cancelled including our big 50th celebratory planting in September. However, bush management work must go on, as we read below in Kylie D’Amico and Warwick McCallum’s Yarra 1 update.
During July we experienced some very cold mornings! (The photo of frozen water drops on plants at the depot nursery was taken by Kylie). We’ve continued our hand weeding at our remnant sites, (Andrew Yandell Habitat Reserve in Greensborough and Wooded Way in Montmorency), chasing the sunshine during the day to warm up.
We again hosted some redeployed Banyule staff, and they have been very grateful to have some outdoor work! This time we had two staff helping us cut and paint a relatively recent coloniser of the Melbourne area - Cassinia sifton, at one of our reserves in Greensborough, Alma Brown Nature Reserve. The four of us removed a full ute load of the weed. After much stomping and squashing in the back of the ute, we managed to get it all in.
Alma Brown Reserve is 4.9 hectares of remnant bushland and was gifted to Banyule Council as a nature reserve by the late Alma Brown who lived on the property for many years. The reserve also has a conservation covenant with Trust For Nature. The reserve supports a small population of kangaroos and a number of significant plant species including the nationally threatened Dianella amoena (Matted Flax-lily), locally threatened Carex iynx (Tussock Sedge) and the Victorian rare Billardiera scandens s.s. (Velvet Apple-berry). There is small tributary of Diamond Creek that runs through the reserve too. It’s a beautiful place to wander through, with many mosaic artworks throughout.
We also did an infill planting with the redeployed staff at our Banyule Swamp East site. A total of 655 plants were infilled into the site. We planted a range of species to increase the diversity of the site including 30 trees and shrubs, 210 sedges and semi-aquatics, and 340 grasses. We placed most of the trees and shrubs near the new fence to soften the view across the paddock and create a canopy connection to the swamp entry area. We guarded most of these plants to protect them from grazing animals, damage from the weather and easier maintenance for us! (Photo: A sea of tree gurads at Banyule Swamp East, K D'Amico.)
Thank you! Kylie and Warwick - Yarra 1 Bushland Team