From little teams, big things grow

Tuesday, 24 September 2019

Native species have returned to City-managed nature reserves and other rare and significant plants are thriving, thanks to the adoption of bush regeneration techniques.

The City is responsible for maintaining about 900 hectares of remnant vegetation across areas of Greater Geelong’s foreshore, rivers, wetlands, bushland and grassland.

Our clever management practices are not only protecting, but improving, the health of these natural assets.

Almost 28 hectares worth of weeds were removed from our nature reserve network in 2017-18, paving the way for indigenous plants to regenerate in massive numbers.

At the Portarlington Flora and Fauna Reserve, two species have been recorded in the area for the first time, following weed control works.

They are the tall shrubs Drooping Cassinia (Cassinia arcuata) and the Common Cassinia (Cassinia aculeate).

The conservation area, at the Portarlington Recreation Reserve, contains regionally-rare vegetation communities.

At the opposite end of the Bellarine Peninsula, clearing has allowed an influx of rare and significant plants, including orchids, to populate a five-kilometre stretch of foreshore.

Buckley Park Foreshore Reserve runs from Collendina and Point Lonsdale and features sensitive sand dunes, Moonah woodland and patches of coastal grasslands.

A $370,000 grant from the Corangamite Catchment Management Authority has allowed for the worst weeds at either end of the reserve to be tackled.

A significant amount of myrtle-leaf milkwort shrubs has been hand removed, allowing hundreds of thousands of new plants to emerge, such as the coast groundsel (Senecio pinnatifolius) and coast Swainson-pea.

The strong re-growth helps provide a diverse habitat for birdlife, including the reserve’s successful hooded plover breeding site.

The City’s 90-strong reserve network has expanded by two sites in the past six months, including a prominent 13.7-hectare reserve at Indented Head.

Acquired in a land swap, the site hosts one of the last redgum woodland remnants in the region.

We are celebrating our world-class natural wonders with a range of activities over September and October for Geelong Biodiversity Month.

Please visit for details of upcoming events.

However, the remaining areas of remnant vegetation we have are under increasing pressure from human activity.

From encroaching development, to dumped rubbish, off-leash dogs and the creation of makeshift tracks, the values of our nature reserves face constant threats.

The City encourages visitors to stay on access paths to protect sensitive areas of our precious nature reserves.

Director City Services Guy Wilson-Browne

Our weed management methods are crucial in providing the right conditions for native plants to return and flourish. It is exciting to see the benefits of that work, with species coming back and areas awash with colourful plant life.
While we are doing everything we can to enhance our natural assets, we need residents to minimise their impacts on the environment. It is vital that we all tread lightly and protect the few remaining areas of significant vegetation that we currently enjoy.

Page last updated: Wednesday, 26 February 2020