By Anna Kantilaftas
Published: Tuesday, October 4, 2022
Invasive weeds are a threat to our bush ecosystem. As weeds creep through the surrounding bushland, they start to suffocate native plants and the habitats of native wildlife.
This was just one of the many things we learnt when our team travelled to Willaston with Trees For Life, volunteering on the organisation’s Bush for Life program.
Watch the video below to learn why regeneration and planting is so important.
The day starts with a briefing, where we learn the best way to remove Bridal Creeper (Asparagus asparagoides f. asparagoides) using the minimal disturbance method, which involves pulling weeds from the roots. This technique is preferred over the use of herbicide, which damage native plants and pose risks to wildlife in the area.
Weeding, we’re told, is primarily bushcare, which is a means of increasing the health of bushland areas. Planting, on the other hand, is about increasing the size of bushland.
While majority of bush action team days are spent on bushcare, we were lucky enough to join the program for a planting day. We planted four rare plant species:
- Southern Swainson-pea (Swainsona behriana)
- Showy Copper-wire Daisy (Podolepis jaceoides)
- Golden Billy Buttons (Pycnosorus chrysanthes)
- Clover Glycine (Glycine latrobeana)
And several more common plants:
- Old Man’s Beard (Clematis microphylla)
- Nine-awn Grass (Enneapogon nigricans)
- Kangaroo Grass (Themeda triandra)
- Woolly New Holland Daisy (Vittadinia gracilis)
- Bulbine-lily (Bulbine bulbosa)
With over 240 sites across the state, the Bush For Life program protects more than 3,764 hectares of land.
The day ends fittingly with an inspiring tour through the bush, learning about the native vegetation and ecology, regeneration principles, strategies and methods for increasing biodiversity, and several techniques used by the volunteers in the area.