The Bushcare Group worked in the Parklands regeneration/conservation area on Sunday 19/11/23. We welcomed two work participation students: a HSC science student and a TAFE conservation and land management student.
Natural regeneration of locally indigenous plant species was facilitated. A seed scattering zone was selected and marked. In the zone, the soil of bare, open areas was chipped. Seed was collected in the bushland perimeter area (Hakea sp., Leptospermum juniperinum, a Banksia serrata cone and Petrophilepulchella), and scattered in the chipped areas of the zone, between exisiting bushland and halfway to the fence. Good November rains will encourage germination of this seed and growth of seedlings.
Hopefully, seed of Lomandra longifolia, Gahnia sieberiana,Hakea teretifolia, Callistemon citrinus and Leptospermum species polygalifolium, lanigerum, juniperinum, grandifolium and arachnoides will be available for scattering in the future.
Along the northern section of the Parklands area, Juncus microcephalus seed and plants and also Scotch Thistles were removed. Photo points were established.
The Bushcare Group worked in the west Waratah Street ecological restoration zone #1 this month. Juncus microcephalus and Privet were targeted. Nice to see plantings of Hakea sericea and Leptospermum polygalifolium doing well.
Lawson stream tributary (ER #4) recorded good water quality: oxygen satisfactory, phosophates low, turbidity low, chemical balance good and water freshness satisfactory.
On Sunday 17/09/2023 the Bushcare Group worked in the new regeneration area, Lawson Parklands. Juncus microcephalus in drain lines was weeded. The site was surveyed for natural regeneration, and it was pleasing to record that quite a large amount of naturally distributed indigenous plant seed has germinated, and the resultant seedlings are maturing. See Parklands at https://southlawsonpark.bushcarebluemountains.org.au/parklands-regeneration/
Streamwatch results were good: oxygen, phosphates, turbidity, chemical balance and water freshness. Happy water bugs!
The Bushcare Group continued its work in the #1 ecological restoration area, west Waratah Street. Primarily, Privet was the target.
Water quality in Lawson Creek tributary was excellent: oxygen, phosphates, turbidity, chemical balance and freshness.
Interesting diggings (traces) in the #1 ER site were observed. This is quite a big excavation. Perhaps a Swamp Wallaby digging for fungi? The excavation has been referred to a higher authority, for interpretation.
Work on primary and secondary management of Privet continued in ecological restoration area #1.
Very pleasing to spot an Australian White Ibis in the wetland immediately north of the BMX track. Much restoration effort has been expended in this area over the years! Bandicoots continue to be very active in ER area #1.
Streamwatch convenor reports that water quality in Lawson Creek tributary ER #4 was good: oxygen levels, phosphorus (low), saltiness (low), chemical balance and turbidity (low).
The Bushcare Group agreed that a natural regeneration audit of Lawson Parklands riparian zone would be undertaken during the September session.
This month (18/06/2023) work continued in the western ecological restoration area (#1), upper Lawson catchment. Management of Privet seedlings and mature specimens (seed limitation) along the boundaries were the main activities. Three x Hakea salicifolia and three x Leptospermum polygalifolium were planted.
Probable Long-nosed bandicoot diggings were observed.
As usual, members of the Bushcare Group collected litter during the walk from parked vehicles to the work site.
Discussion of future Parklands riparian zone management was held during the work session. The Bushcare Group agreed that a survey of natural regeneration within the riparian area would be a good idea. The survey will be conducted in forthcoming months.
Discussion about future Parklands works was conducted during the bushcare session: proposed construction of access toilets on Parklands site and upgrade of Ferris Lane carpark.
A. The new toilets are welcome. Full management of construction sediments and runoffs is necessary to avoid contamination of down slope Lawson Swamp (State and Federal listed threatened vegetation community).
B. Any upgrade of Ferris Lane car park should be mindful of the environmental qualities and values of the adjacent ecological community, Lawson Swamp (State and Federal listed threatened vegetation community). No construction encroachment into swamp; existing grass buffer zone to be maintained for nutrient absorption; full management of construction sediments and runoffs; provision of adequate management and treatment of stormwater flows in upgraded drain located between existing car park and oval; no drainage of stormwater flows into bordering bushland; careful management of listed C.gummifera E.sieberi Open Forest Woodland and Blue Mountains Swamps along Ferris Lane during construction period, particularly management of vehicles and machinery.
Streamwatch convenor reports that water quality in upper Lawson Creek tributary was good.
The May session was conducted in the west #1 ecological restoration site, Waratah Street. Despite receiving very little attention over the last six months, due to the closure of Ferris Lane, the site was looking fairly good: lots of healthy sedges, grasses, Hakea sp., Leptospermum sp. and of course, Privet!
Privet was tackled: big, small and medium. Eight Hakea salicifolia and Leptospermum polygalifolium were planted in the “slump”, or mini headcut, located along the eastern perimter of the site. This area is reasonably stable, as it is well vegetated with Privet. The task of selectively removing and trimming back Privet and Japanese Honeysuckle, to create space and light for further planting, commenced today.
Streamwatch convenor reports that oxygen, phosphate, water freshness, chemical balance and turbidity in Lawson Creek were all satisfactory.
Today, 16 April, South Lawson Park Bushcare Group met for the first time on its new Lawson Parklands site, the riparian zone of Lawson Creek. The riparian zone has been fenced and borders the exisiting bushland that stretches along Lawson Creek. The objective is to revegetate the riparian zone, using a range of methods: natural regeneration (germination of naturally distributed indigenous plant seed); assisted natural regeneration (distributing by hand the seed of indigenous plants); planting of indigenous plants. Some natural regeneration is already occurring within the riparian zone, so that is very pleasing.
The group worked in the riparian zone today, along the edge of and also in Lawson swamp, mainly targeting Japanese Honeysuckle and Privet. The indigenous plants planted by the bushcare group over ten years ago are doing quite well.
We were then pleased to meet with Gundungurra community member, David King, and partner Belle, to discuss revegetation and other Parklands management issues. Maintaining this important partnership with the Gundungurra community and respecting their deep interests in the Parklands site and land, a part of their homelands and subject to an ILUA, will always be a high priority for the bushcare group.
The new South Lawson Parklands community recreation and nature hub is proving to be a great success. There were many parents, children on bikes, mums and dads with prams and strollers, joggers and walkers all out enjoying the new walking path. Dog owners and their pooches were having a great time in the new fenced dog off-leash area. A very pleasant scene.
As reported in the March 2023 news on this website, Belle Butler and Hamish Dunlop, Blue Mountains Planetary Health Initiative, Katoomba, BMCC, are preparing an article on the ecological restoration work of the bushcare group in the upper catchment of Lawson Creek, and interviewed group members. Their report has now been published, and makes for good reading. See Archives: Mid-Mountains News: South Lawson Park Bushcare Group April 2023.
Streamwatch convenor reports that water quality in Lawson Creek on the Parklands (downstream of Lawson swamp and adjacent to riparian zone) was very good: oxygen levels (satisfactory), phosphorous (low), pH (balanced), turbidity (low) and freshness (high).
On March 08/03/23 we enjoyed a visit from Belle Butler and Hamish Dunlop, Blue Mountains Planetary Health Initiative, Katoomba, BMCC. They had heard of our holistic ecological restoration, bushcare and streamwatch approach to the restoration of the upper catchment of Lawson Creek, and were keen to come along and conduct some interviews, take some film footage and get an idea of the project. Outcomes will include visual and written media, so we look forward to seeing the finished products.
On March 15/03/23 Bushcare Group members joined BMCC natural area manager and Bushcare officers for a tour of the recently completed South Lawson Parklands project (Stage One). Bushcare Group engagement with the parklands, particularly the riparian buffer zone, was discussed.
At the regular Sunday session Bushcare Group members enjoyed a session of information exchange and interviews with Belle Butler, Blue Mountains Planetary Health Initiative. Motivation, achievements, climate change, work techniques, community engagement, frustrations and satisfactions were on the agenda!
Work continued in ecological restoration area #2 (swamp/wetland) and area #4. In particular, 8 x Hakea salicifolia and Leptospermum polygalifolium were planted along a Lawson creek tributary (area #4).
Streamwatch Convenor reports that water quality was most satisfactory: oxygen levels; phosphorous; chemical balance; freshness of water; turbidity.
Work continued in sections #1, #2 and #4 of the ecological restoration area. In section #1 new plantings were weeded. Overall, these plants are doing well. The #1 site is displaying good resilience, with only weedy grasses and sedges making an appearance. Natural regeneration of Hakea sp. and Leptospermum sp. along the edges of the good bush is occurring.
In #2 J. microcephalus seeds were removed. A grove of Privet along the embankment was treated with herbicide.
In section #4 a medium sized stand of Privet was treated with herbicide. Juvenile seedlings were removed. The new plantings (H. salicifolia) along the stream are doing well.
Streamwatch convenor reports that water quality was good.