The bushcare site is:
- located in south Lawson, Blue Mountains, NSW on public land managed by Blue Mountains City Council.
- commences 400 metres to the south-east of Lawson shopping centre, and extends over the upper catchment of Lawson Creek.
- approximately bounded by Waratah Street to the north and Junction Falls, Lawson Creek, in the south.
- focused on Lawson Creek and its tributaries, riparian zone, swamps and adjoining woodlands.
- home to at least 60 species of Australian indigenous fauna.
- vegetated by at least 70 species of Australian indigenous flora.
South Lawson Park
The park, which is a public recreation reserve, extends over much of the bushcare site. It was set aside as a reserve in 1876 and dedicated as a park in 1887. Local resident Joseph Hay arranged for the park’s dedication and much of the early track construction (Reference: Brian Cox, ‘Blue Mountains Geographical Dictionary’ 2006).
The altitude of Lawson is 700 metres and average annual rainfall is approximately 1250mm, with summer and autumn being the wettest months (Bureau of Meteorology). Temperature ranges are on average, mild. However, forecast summer temperatures are steadily increasing.
Significant adverse impacts on the catchment are:
- activities that disturb intact bushland, such as maintenance of essential infrastructure and the construction of unauthorised paths or bike tracks. These activities can allow weeds to become established in a particular area. Intact and healthy bushland tends to repel weed infestation.
- unmanaged stormwater flows
- rubbish dumping
- feral animals
- and most importantly, climate change. The frequency of Bureau of Meteorology forecasts for extremely hot summer days and longer sequences of hot days is increasing. The severe 2018-2020 drought has resulted in very low stream flows, with reduced oxygen levels and impaired macroinvertebrate habitat. Natural regeneration processes are being impeded due to extreme dryness. Indigenous plants are stressed or in some cases, dying. The severe 2019-20 bushfires have killed millions of native animals and also destroyed essential habitat.
A great way to become familiar with the site is to view our eight minute film, Bushcare Blue Mountains: South Lawson Park: https://vimeo.com/verahong/south-lawson-bushcare . Many thanks to Vera and Craig at Seconds Minutes Hours Productions for their wonderful cinematography.
(Australian Copyright Act 1968 applies. Text and photos on this site are subject to copyright. Many thanks to the members of South Lawson Park Bushcare Group, our BMCC Bushcare Officer and Second Minutes Hours Productions for their contributions to this website)