Woodend Landcare – August 2021 News

TONIGHT! Grassland Talk and AGMMonday 16 August 2021

A reminder that our AGM and talk are being held online tonight, Monday 16 August at 7.30pm. Email woodendlandcare@gmail.com for the zoom meeting link.

Martin Roberts will be speaking about the value and importance of local grasslands. These are the most threatened ecosystem types in our region. Martin will discuss the management of a valuable existing grassland – the Woodend Grassland Reserve – including the role of ecological burns. He will also highlight the steps taken to recreate a grassland at the Quarry Rd retarding basin. Martin Roberts is the Bushland Reserves Officer at Macedon Ranges Shire Council.

Woodend Grassland Reserve by Hubert Weisrock

Working BeeSunday 22 August 2021 maximum of 10 adults

Our Working Bees start back this month on Sunday 22 August from 9am-12pm. This month we will meet at the Five Mile Creek embankment on Campaspe Dr near Heron St. Please park in Campaspe Park (over the creek from Bowling Club).

Please bring gumboots, waterproof clothing, own gloves, secateurs & eye protection. For this event, please also bring own morning tea. We’ll be cutting, painting and hand-weeding emerging woody weeds below the embankment. We will also look to work in the area opposite the Children’s Park.

Important – Due to strict limit of 10 adults, please RSVP attendance (email woodlandcare@gmail.com) in advance. When you arrive, please use the QR code near the tool trailer to check in.  

Please check our Facebook page for any late cancellations due to weather or Covid. Any questions, email us at woodendlandcare@gmail.com.

Five Mile Creek near the Campaspe Drive embankment

Box of Habitat Update

Recipients will be pleased to know that they are close to receiving their long awaited Boxes of Habitat.

Most of the orders from Tree Project have now been picked up. It was a pleasure to meet Kalai Shaw and Suelin Haynes – who are the coordinators of the volunteers growing our order (pictured below). These volunteers have been growing our seedlings all year and include members from Caulfield Gardening Club and a women’s refuge center in St Kilda.

Tree Project is a amazing program to be part of. If you would like to find out more, visit the Tree Project website here. They are now looking for growers and landholders to order for 2022.

Our boxes of habitat will be mixed and distributed as soon as our order from Western Plains Flora arrives. Helpers to mix the boxes are most welcome – let Krista know if you can.

After the storm, we were lucky enough to source an extra 500 plants which meant we could give out a additional 16 boxes of plants. Most of these have gone to people who missed out earlier and to properties that were badly impacted by the storms. The boxes looked great (see pic below), however the boxes coming soon will be even more diverse. A big thanks to Raina Kilner for the plants and to Jen Firestone for helping deliver and mix up the boxes.

Shall we do it again 2022?

We are thinking about offering this Box of Habitat program again. It would be good to know the level of interest before we commit. If you are keen in being involved and planting some habitat next year, please email woodendlandcare@gmail.com or call Krista on 0408 204 449.

Note that, if we go ahead, there will likely be some adjustments to the program including the price and timing. We want to ensure we get plants at the best time for planting and that we fully cover the costs involved. We are also open to any feedback from those involved this year.

Community Grant Success! Five Mile Creek Masterplan

We are pleased to share the we have been successful in obtaining a Council community grant for the development of a Masterplan for Five Mile Creek. A masterplan will help Woodend Landcare and Council work together to enhance Woodend Five Mile Creek over the next ten years or more.

It will guide habitat restoration projects, support grant applications and inform infrastructure needs to improve the passive recreation and access to the creek for a broad range of users. Most importantly for Woodend Landcare, the masterplan will ensure future actions have the best ecological outcome for the creek and its surrounds and will ensure this work is supported by the local community.

Development of a masterplan for the creek and its environs was a key action in the recent community climate action plan developed for Woodend, and in the broader Five Mile Creek project being developed with North Central Catchment Management Authority.

We are keen to get started on this exciting project and will encourage lots of input when the time comes. *watch this space*

Healthy Landscapes Program

Readers may be interested in the following programs about regenerative agricultural practices to help you improve your land, soil, water and livestock in the shires of Macedon Ranges, Hepburn and City of Greater Bendigo:

  • Individual, free, on-farm advice
  • Webinars, workshops and field days
  • Holistic Grazing Management short course
  • Farmer discussion group

Click here to find out more about the program and to register your interest.

The program has a newsletter covering upcoming events, interesting tips and other ways to be involved in the regenerative farming world – subscribe to the newsletter here.

Draft Updated Environment Strategy

You are invited to share your feedback on Council’s updated Environment Strategy.

The previous Environment Strategy was adopted in 2016 and since that time, Council has delivered most of the strategy’s actions such as preparation of a Biodiversity Strategy, Climate Change Action Plan and Waste and Resource Recovery Strategy.

The vision and key principles from the original strategy have been retained, and the updated strategy responds to a range of emerging priorities identified by the community through previous engagement processes. It is also aligned with Council’s recent declaration of a climate emergency, the development of technologies in the energy sector, and changes at a state and national level to legislation and environmental priorities.

Feedback is invited until Friday, 10 September and can be submitted via an online survey or to environment@mrsc.vic.gov.au.

Woodend Landcare – July 2021 News

Woodend Landcare invites you to join us on Monday 16 August for an interesting evening celebrating Woodend Landcare and our local grasslands. 

Woodend Grasslands Talk

Martin Roberts will be speaking about the value and importance of local grasslands. These are the most threatened ecosystem types in our region. Martin will discuss the management of a valuable existing grassland – the Woodend Grassland Reserve – including the role of ecological burns. He will also highlight the steps taken to recreate a grassland at the Quarry Rd retarding basin. Martin Roberts is the Bushland Reserves Officer at Macedon Ranges Shire Council.

AGM – would you like to join the committee?

On the same evening, we will hold our Annual General Meeting. We encourage you to consider joining the committee – we’d love some new faces at our bi-monthly meetings. Please contact Kate if you are interested on 5427 2312 or email woodendlandcare@gmail.com.

The grassland talk and AGM will be held online via zoom at 7.30pm on Monday 16 August. Email woodendlandcare@gmail.com to rsvp and for the zoom link. 

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Join or Renew your Membership

Now is that time of year when we ask members to renew their Landcare membership. Membership demonstrates support for our group and ensures participants are covered by insurance at our working bees. We currently have 48 members (including families) – it would be great to see this membership grow. If you would like to join, click here to download a Woodend Landcare Membership Form.

Our annual membership fee remains $20 and you can join or renew your membership by either:

  • sending cash or cheque to Woodend Landcare, PO Box 297, Woodend 3442; or
  • paying $20 electronically (include your name in the transaction). Account details: Woodend Landcare, Westpac Bank, BSB 033-674, Acct 982435. 

2021-22 Calendar

Our monthly Working Bees are set to resume in August. Below is a snippet of our calendar for the remainder of the year so you can note the dates in your diary.

Click here to download the 2021-22 Woodend Landcare calendar (word)

calander july-dec 2021

A reminder that Working Bees will be cancelled on days of Total Fire Ban without further notification.

Thursday Crew working bees are held on Thursday morning at 9 am (when weather and restrictions allow). Contact Dave Bower on dvbower65@gmail.com if you would like to join the Thursday crew mailing list. 

Plants and Animals of the Wombat Forest | Online event, 2-4pm, Sunday 8 August

Join the Macedon Ranges Field Naturalists to learn more about the plants and animals of the Wombat Forest. Gayle Osborne and Trevor Speirs from Wombat Forestcare will describe the special species such as the Powerful Owl, Greater Glider, Brush-tailed Phascogale and important flora as well as efforts underway to protect and document them.

Click here to book

owl

Powerful owls spotted locally!

A Woodend resident recently found a Powerful Owl along Black Forest Drive. This exciting discovery had us thinking about how we can help protect this beautiful but threatened species in our area. Click here to listen to local nature writer Tanya Loos explain how choosing a better rodenticide will give the species a much better chance.  

Have your say – Macedon Ranges Shire Rural Land Use Strategy

The draft Rural Land Use Strategy seeks to update the policy direction for rural land in the Macedon Ranges Shire. The strategy is currently open for feedback. Click here to find out more

More great Landcare News

Wombat Forestcare – July 2021 Newsletter – includes a article on the recently announced Wombat-Lerderderg National Park and impacts from the big storm. 

North Central Chat – July 2021 Edition

Woodend Landcare – May News and Bee

Woodend Landcare May Working Bee – 23 May

Our final Sunday working bee for the current season will be at Slatey Creek Black Gum Reserve on Sunday 23 May from 9am until 12pm. This is a lovely small bush reserve managed by local residents throughout the year. Once every twelve to eighteen months Woodend Landcare helps out by scheduling a working bee here. Tasks include woody weed removal, plant guard maintenance, litter pickup and burning off of some debris piles if conditions are suitable. 
 
The reserve is 1.4 km on the left along Ashbourne Rd and parking is in the no through road on the east side of the reserve. Wear protective full-length clothing, suitable footwear and bring secateurs, safety glasses and gloves. The work at this site is easier than some of our more recent working bees so come along for a relaxing morning and our tasty morning tea (provided). As always, newcomers to Landcare are very welcome. Due to any possible changes in Covid restrictions and to help with catering, please register your interest at woodendlandcare@gmail.com
 
After this event we head into our Winter recess. Our Sunday working bees will recommence on 23 August 2021. 

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Celebrate Ecosystem Restoration this World Environment Day – 5 June

World Environment Day encourages awareness of the environment. The theme for this year is ecosystem restoration. To celebrate, Macedon Ranges Shire Council is hosting a range of activities throughout the day. Click on the links below for more information and to register to attend the event.

  • Visit a farming property in Malmsbury where the owners are restoring ecosystems with the use of tree plantations and regenerative grazing beef cattle. The tour will commence at 2pm and finish at 3pm.
  • Tour of Black Hill Reserve, Kyneton. Join Council officers on a guided walk from 10am-12pm to look at the recovery of vegetation after the bushfires of 2015. 
  • Come along to a rehabilitated property in Newham to discuss the benefits of a healthy ecosystem. The tour will commence at 12pm and finish at 2pm.
  • Check out the stall at the Woodend Farmers Market to find out how to help restore ecosystems on your property and provide feedback on the Draft Roadside Conservation Management Plan.cows in field

Useful resource: Revegetating your property

Have you ever thought about the types of plants that once lived on your property? Planting native plants on your property will increase habitat for wildlife, reduce soil erosion, improve waterways and water quality, and provide shelter and shade to livestock. Council now has a handy resource to help work out what native plants to use in your gardens and revegetation projects. Click here to check it out. Also, remember that Woodend Landcare also has a simple guide for local planting which is available on our website. 

reveg

Interested in Roadside Vegetation?

Roadside vegetation is pretty special and plays a important environmental role. Fortunately, Council has its first ever Draft Roadside Conservation Management Plan open for consultation. The draft plan sets out a series of actions aimed at protecting the conservation values of the shire’s rural roadsides while managing fire risk and maintaining road safety. Click here to check it out and provide feedback.  

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Inspiring viewing: Linking the Landscape – The Cobaw Biolink

This inspiring five minute video promotes the important role of the Cobaw Biolink in enhancing the connections between Mount Macedon and the Cobaw Range on both private and public land. Importantly, it shows that any environmental contribution, no matter how big or small, is vital. Landholders can help contribute through enhancing waterways, undertaking weed and pest control, protecting remnant vegetation,  revegetation and encouraging native grasslands on their properties.

The video has been produced by Newham & District Landcare Group, with funding support from Macedon Ranges Shire Council and Melbourne Water. Click here to watch

Cobaw biolink video

Working Bee – Sunday 18 April at Quarry Rd Reserve

Many Woodend residents have admired the wildflowers growing along Quarry Rd Rail Reserve over Spring. Now it is time to undertake some woody weed removal and help this important site thrive. 
 
Woodend Landcare’s April working bee will be held at the Quarry Rd Rail Reserve this Sunday 18 April from 9 am until 12 pm.  We will focus on removing gorse and broom which are a persistent problem along the reserve requiring regular attention. We will start by checking over the best wildflower area near the intersection of Washington Lane and Quarry Rd and will then progress along the reserve in an easterly direction.
 
Come find out where the best wildflowers will appear in Spring and Summer. Bring gloves, protective eyewear, secateurs and wear full length old clothes and sturdy footwear. The best place to park is along Washington Lane. Please register your interest at woodendlandcare@gmail.com and any possible changes due to Covid restrictions or weather will be notified. 
 
Residents living nearby and any newcomers to Landcare are very welcome to join us for some quite easy hands-on work, enjoy our usual high quality morning tea, and help preserve this special native plant diversity found so close to the centre of our town.
 
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Woodend Landcare – March 2021 News

March Working Bee – 9 am, Sunday 28th of March, Heron St area

Our March working bee will be held around the Heron St levee bank. The focus will be on woody weed removal and we are particularly keen to tackle the Hawthorn that is growing on the steep banks. There will be plenty of work for every-one of all ages – especially enthusiastic volunteers who like to see an impact in a matter of hours.

The best place to park is along Campaspe Drive to the east of Heron St. Due to COVID restrictions we require participants to bring their own secateurs, sturdy gardening gloves and protective eye wear. Disposable waterproof gloves will be provided but need to be taken home for personal disposal. As with every Landcare working bee, dress appropriately in old, full length clothing and sturdy footwear. Gumboots may be useful at this working bee so bring some along if you have a pair.

The Landcare tool trailer will be onsite for more specialist equipment but be mindful we are trying to limit sharing of tools. If further restrictions require a cap on numbers any changes will be notified beforehand. For this reason and to help with catering our tasty morning teas, it is important to register your attendance. Please email woodendlandcare@gmail.com if you can attend. The working bee will be cancelled if a total fire ban is declared in the Central district.

While you are in the Heron Street area, take moment to check out the nearby 2016 Trees for Mum planting site – how has it changed from these photos taken over the past 5 years since it was first cleared?

A brief history of “the paddocks”

We had an excellent turn-out to our February working bee at the site affectionately known as “The Paddocks”. This refers to the area on the south side of Five Mile Creek between Bowen St. and Pyke St – not far along from the Children’s Park.

The Paddocks were once covered with a dense poplar thicket and an old landfill, probably dating back to the 19th century, was discovered north of the levee bank near Pyke St. In 2007, Woodend Landcare received a grant to clear the site of poplars and revegetate it with native species. The chipped poplars made quite a mess. To enable planting and future mowing, the entire area had to be ‘power raked’.

2,690 locally native trees, shrubs and grasses were planted in spring 2007 along the creek. Because of drought conditions at the time, these plantings were regularly watered over the following summer. A second planting of 350 plants was undertaken in early April 2008 by a Green Corps team – these are the larger ‘patches’ of trees you can now see along the path.

In autumn 2011, Woodend Landcare planted 21 non-native trees in The Paddocks to provide a visual contrast with the native plantings and also as future shade trees. This was part-funded by Council with many of the trees privately donated or bought by Landcare. The trees have been regularly tended and watered by Landcare volunteers.

Finally, in 2017, 120 grasses were added to the revegetation sites to create more habitat diversity.

Countless volunteer hours have gone into planting and maintaining The Paddocks over the years. Woodend Landcare would like to thank everyone who has played a valuable part in restoring the site. Today, it’s a lovely part of the Five Mile Creek Reserve which will only get better as the trees mature.

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Our second working bee in February was held around the Romsey Rd area of the Five Mile Creek Reserve. Peter Yates reports:  “Good job today. Twelve attendees. Removed and bagged three huge bags of thistles from on of the small dams and cut and painted lots of gorse and blackberry around the other. Also cleared an area east of the Curry Bridge of willow, blackberry and gorse.” It was also a chance to check out our new signs for the Landcare trailer. Thanks to Peter for organising these.

new landcare signs

More Landcare news to note:

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