Greenfleet Blog Feed

21 Aug 2017

Another 110,000 native trees at ’Avoca’, NSW
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Another 110,000 native trees at ’Avoca’, NSW

Greenfleet purchased ‘Avoca’, a 1,700-ha property in the heart of the Central West region in New South Wales, in March 2013.

The following winter, we started our reforestation work on the property and direct-seeded nearly 850ha with a mix of 45 species, locally native to the area. The planting site has been monitored every year since and many wattles are already 3 to 4 metres tall!

In winter 2017, we are planting another 110,000 native trees to revegetate a further 176 ha. 40 percent of the property is already vegetated with remnant bush and natural regrowth, and our work is now completing the project with a biodiverse, native forest. All up, we’re revegetating an area 14 times larger than Melbourne CBD!

Greenfleet Forester Eoghan O’Connor is pleased with the progress of the project. “Most of the areas we direct-seeded in 2013 have shown good germination rates, mostly with wattle species,” he explained.

“This year, we’re going back to the areas with lower germination rates to plant more eucalypts and increase the biodiversity aspect of the forest; as well as planting new areas which weren’t done in 2013. Some of these include highly eroded creek lines, whose further erosion we aim to stop with the trees.”

“We’ve had nearly 50mm of rain at the start of planting this year, which made for excellent conditions for the seedlings going into the ground. Our team of professional planting contractors is planting about 900 trees each every day.” Avoca lies within the traditional country of the Wiradjuri people. In the past decades, the property had been used for cropping (mostly wheat and canola) and sheep farming with around 500 hectares of poorer soils left as remnant vegetation. The landscape was in dire need of some Greenfleet TLC.

The surrounding region has been extensively cleared for cropping and grazing, with remaining native vegetation in a highly-fragmented state. The property neighbours the Buddigower State Forest due to become part of the nearby Buddigower Nature Reserve, home to 26 animal species listed as endangered or vulnerable, including the mallee fowl, shy heath-wren and southern scrub robin. The number of threatened birds reflects the high degree of vegetation clearance in the region and the vulnerability of these species to the effects of habitat loss and fragmentation (Traill & Duncan 2000).

Thanks to our supporters’ contributions, which funded this project, we are creating much needed landscape connectivity and enhancing conservation. As it grows, the forest provides vital habitat to the threatened birdlife of the Buddigower Nature Reserve and endangered migrating species, such as the Swift Parrot.

The forest acts as a biodiverse, natural carbon sink while protecting and conserving the natural values of the region. During our visit in August 2017, we saw plenty of birds and kangaroos, using the young forest as a food source and shelter – a great sign of the early success of this revegetation project.

  Map showing where Greenfleet's NSW property is located
Map showing where our property 'Avoca' is located in NSW

Image showing the size of Greenfleet's NSW property, 'Avoca'
Satellite image showing the size of Greenfleet's NSW property, 'Avoca'

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