Debbie Williams illustrates the hard work put in by volunteers on the first morning of the revegetation project. Now, volunteers pray there’s some decent rain and the area’s kangaroo population doesn’t trample the plants. G052414
PASSIONATE conservationists are in the midst of planting thousands of seedlings on a forgotten patch of Crown land in Wonthaggi’s north-west.
Volunteers from Wonthaggi Seed Bank started the mammoth task last week, planting around 2000 indigenous species over the first two days.
By next fortnight, they hope to have completed sowing over 5000 plants, spread over 18 hectares.
Seed Bank vice president, Debbie Williams, said it was a massive undertaking but an important one, since the parcel of land in question has been left sparse for far too long.
“This has sort of been left as no man’s land,” Ms Williams said on site last week, with the nearby wind turbines towering in the background.
“It is known to many as ‘Shellekins’ farmland because it was cleared for farming many years ago.”
Abutting both Williamsons Beach coastal reserve and part of the desalination plant’s ecological reserve, the land is ripe for revegetation.
The tube stock saplings were propagated at the Seed Bank’s own community nursery at the State Coal Mine, which opened last spring.
While there are plenty lending a hand to complete the project over the next few weeks, new volunteers are always welcome.
“We have tools for everyone and a lovely morning tea is provided to all helpers,” Ms Williams added.
“It’s great to see people enjoying planting and we’re a very friendly group.
“And the best thing is you get to see results.”
Locals wishing to lend a hand are advised to bring sturdy boots and a bottle of water to the site, located off Lower Powlett Road, close to the desalination plant entrance.
Vehicle entry to the area is marked with a few colourful pinwheels.
Planting takes place each Wednesday and Friday mornings from 9am, finishing on June 27.
For more information, call Wonthaggi Seed Bank president Beth Banks on 5672 2028 or 0407 321 174.