Trees Available

Quantity species Common name Growth Tips where to plant
3 E. stellulata Black sallee Grows to 15m  
16 E.bridgesiana Apple box Grows to 20m  
17 E. albens WHITE BOX Grows: 8-15m high Plant: most soils, plains & low hills
35 E. microcarpa Grey Box Grows to 25m  
27 A. dealbata SILVER WATTLE Grows: to 20m Plant: various soils, often creek banks
13 E. sideroxylon Mugga iron bark Grows to 25m  
37 Lomandra longifolia spiny matt rush

Trees Available

Quantity
3
16
17
35
27
13
37
species
E. stellulata
E.bridgesiana
E. albens
E. microcarpa
A. dealbata
E. sideroxylon
Lomandra longifolia
Common name
Black sallee
Apple box
WHITE BOX
Grey Box
SILVER WATTLE
Mugga iron bark
spiny matt rush
Growth
Grows to 15m
Grows to 20m
Grows: 8-15m high
Grows to 25m
Grows: to 20m
Grows to 25m
Tips where to plant
 
 
Plant: most soils, plains & low hills
 
Plant: various soils, often creek banks
 

Is it still a weed at $70/kg

The latest trend in top Sydney restaurants is weeds. Farmers friends, purslane, salsify, wild asparagus and nettle are all on the menu and chefs are willing to pay top dollar.

One man is on a mission to connect farmers, landholders and budding foragers from the Central Tablelands to the catering and restaurant industry of Sydney.

After many years working as a foraging educator Diego Bonetto has established Wildfood Store, a marketplace for edible wild food. The platform and registered company will offer farmers and people in regional NSW the opportunity to subsidise their income by harvesting desirable edible wild plants.

“There is an unrelenting request form the city’s fine dining industry for well presented, clean, atypical edible species.” said Diego.

For example young, good quality tips of farmers friends can fetch $7-8 for a 100 g punnet.

“Farmers have edible weeds growing all over so it is just a matter to train people how to harvest and package and get the produce to the city.” he continued.

Diego has secured some seed funding from the NSW Government via an initiative in collaboration with the Kandos School Of Cultural Adaptation.

The concept is simple. Chefs in the city want clean, well-presented and fresh wild edibles. Diego will train farmers on how to harvest and package the produce and via a distribution company in the city deliver them to the top restaurants in Sydney. The farmers get paid for their efforts and Diego will bring their stories to the city’s tables.

Diego will be running a Foragers Training Workshop in Kandos on Saturday, 11 August from 10am-12:30 pm.

Diego Bonneto will provide training on how to harvest and package desirable wild plants and get the produce to the city.

Diego Bonetto is an Italian artist, father, forager, speaker, keen naturalist and award winning cultural worker based in Sydney. Diego works with chefs, scientists, architects, academics, herbalists, brewers, soap makers, producers, educators and land owners, providing programs, workshops, tours, community engagement strategies and exhibitions. You can read more about Diego on his website: http://www.diegobonetto.com.

Attendance to the workshop is $10, visit https://www.diegobonetto.com/shop/mid-western-foragers-training-aug11 to book your spot.

Can’t make the workshop? Diego will also be available to conduct consultation visits to local properties to identify wild food produce potential during the week of August 6 to 10. Contact Diego on 0411 293 178 or info@diegobonetto.com for more information.

Enviro health through our community

Local landcare group, Watershed Landcare, remains focused on promoting and facilitating environmental sustainability and natural resource management in our region. Our mission: to engage, empower and support our community to achieve a resilient and sustainable environment within the Watershed Landcare district.

And that’s no mean feat in a region of diverse land use and community interests with a footprint of 900,000 ha!

Way Forward: Watershed Landcare encourages the uptake of sustainable land management practices by providing training on a diverse range of topics.

We work with our members and the community to improve knowledge and awareness, and to increase the uptake of sustainable land management practices. Sustainable agriculture is a key priority and we strive to promote innovation and bring sustainability into agricultural production; that means getting people to do business in a sustainable and viable fashion.

To encourage the uptake of innovative practices we provide training in the latest agricultural and land management practices and techniques, focusing on a diverse range of topics such as grazing management, building soil carbon and health, plant identification and management of invasive species.

Recently we have run workshops on native seed collection and propagation, serrated tussock management, paddock trees and remnant vegetation and in the next week have two booked out workshops coming up; sustainable soil management, and how to effectively tell your story with social media.

In the last year we have supported our members to conduct projects to protect and enhance native vegetation on their land, establish paddock trees and prepare whole of property plans for the management of serrated tussock.

Our special interest groups remain a high priority and we have supported the Grazing Group, Mudgee Microscope Group, Women in Ag Group, Mudgee Bee Group and the Friends of Putta Bucca to explore topics of interest and provide a peer support network for their members. They have explored topics such as bee biosecurity, seed saving, drought planning, and conducted on-ground works to rehabilitate the Putta Bucca wetland.

Want to find out more about our events, projects or how to get involved? Contact one of our Coordinators, Claudia Wythes on 0412 011 064 or Agness Knapik on 0435 055 493 or email: info@watershedlandcare.com.au.

Do you have a great idea for a project, speaker ot topic we should explore? Let us know, we’re always on the look out for fresh ideas.

Artful way to capture the right attention

As consumers become increasingly interested in where and how their food and fibre are produced, more and more farmers and producers are turning to direct marketing to sell their wares. But how do you tell your story in the right way to the right people?

Join us for a ‘Visual Storytelling – the art of capturing the right attention’ workshop on Sunday, 1 July and learn how you can use social media to convert your customers into a community.

Watershed Landcare have invited Sophie Hansen, founder and creator of Local is Lovely and My Open Kitchen and 2016 National Rural Woman of the Year, and Annie Herron, painter, sculptor and art teacher who has taught art to all ages for over 40 years and has been exhibiting for 30 years, to present the workshop.

Social media is a visual medium and so great photos are an important part of your storytelling. In this three-hour workshop we will run through how to compose, capture, caption and share images that tell your story in the most engaging way possible.

Creative Afternoon: 2016 National Rural Woman of the Year, Sophie Hansen, will present the Visual Storytelling workshop.

We will cover the basics of composing engaging images, how to shoot them on your smartphone (or camera if you prefer) and how to edit them so they really pop.

Then we’ll move on to the words – how to write and edit captions that tell a story, that engage and motivate your customers so they become community members and your biggest advocates.

This will be a lovely afternoon of creativity, strategy and figuring out how to tell your story in the right way to the right people.

The Visual Storytelling workshop will be held from 12 noon to 4pm on Sunday, 1 July at Augustine Function Centre, 50 George Campbell Drive, Mudgee. All welcome, the workshop is free to attend with lunch provided but please RSVP by Tuesday, 26 June as numbers are strictly limited.

For more information or to RSVP contact Watershed Landcare Coordinator, Claudia Wythes, on 0412 011 064 or email: claudia.wythes@watershedlandcare.com.au.

This event is supported by Watershed Landcare through funding from the Central Tablelands LLS from NSW Catchment Action and the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme and is a part of the NSW Government’s Local Landcare Coordinators Initiative, supported through the partnership of Local Land Services and Landcare NSW.

It’s all in the soil? Improve your patch!

Want to improve mineral cycles, soil fertility, drought resilience, pasture and crop health and productivity on your patch?

Soil and plant function is intrinsically linked to the chemical, physical and biological properties of soil. But did you know that by reintroducing and encouraging the life in your soil you can greatly influence soil chemistry and fertility?

Watershed Landcare have invited grazier, enquiring farmer and soil specialist, Bruce Davison to present a Sustainable Soil Management workshop in June.

Bruce has an advanced diploma of agriculture and advanced diploma of agribusiness management. Bruce has also trained in soil chemistry and plant nutrition, compost and compost tea making, Holistic management and certificate IV in training and assessment. Bruce is self employed as a farmer and soil consultant.

Bruce runs a cattle grazing enterprise on the far south coast of NSW where he has had success with utilising biological farming principles to build nutrients in his soils.

The full day workshop will cover soil basics, understanding soil biology, improving soil quality and growing nutrient dense food, constructing a high nutrient compost heap, building a farm scale worm farm and reading and interpreting your soil test.

The workshop will be held from 9am-5pm on Thursday 28 June at the Lecture Room, Australian Rural Education Centre (AREC). Attendance is $35 for Watershed Landcare members and $45 for non-members and includes morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea.

The course fee also includes the Soilsmith usb which contains a lot of reading and reference material, plus the soil nutrient spreadsheet which is the centrepiece of the workshop as it enables farmers to make their own decisions on soil management.

The Sustainable Soil Management workshop will include a session on reading and interpreting soil reports and calculating amendments using the soil nutrient spreadsheet. We encourage all interested participants to bring along any soil analysis results they have.

Workshop participants are also eligible to undertake a subsidised soil test prior to the event. Please contact us for more information.

To register for the workshop please contact Watershed Landcare Coordinator, Agness Knapik, on 0435 055 439 email: info@watershedlandcare.com.au.

This event is supported by Watershed Landcare and is a part of the NSW Government’s Local Landcare Coordinators Initiative, supported through the partnership of Local Land Services and Landcare NSW.

Paddock trees linking our landscape

The Central Tablelands region is one of the most highly cleared areas of woodland in NSW. Watershed Landcare have been running a project aiming to enhance areas of highly cleared ecosystems by improving linkages between remnant native vegetation.

The Paddock Trees project, supported by Central Tablelands Local Land Services through funding from the Australian Government, provided financial assistance to landholders to increase the extent of paddock trees and clusters on the land they manage. Individual landholders were eligible to apply for up to $2,750 in funding for materials or labour to conduct on-ground works that improve vegetation extent and quality.

Six landholders from Lue, Rylstone, Gulgong, Stoney Creek and Mudgee participated in the project, conducting on-ground works to protect existing remnant vegetation and establish new corner, cluster and single paddock tree plantings.

Participating landholders worked with Watershed Landcare’s botanist to select suitable, endemic species to meet their desired project outcomes. At one project site, the planting was designed specifically to aid with the remediation of a heavily eroded, saline area.

As part of the project 8 ha were re-vegetated with over 1000 trees. When mature, these plantings will not only provide connectivity to existing remnant vegetation and act as wildlife corridors but will also provide other valuable ecosystem services such as habitat for pollinators as well as birds and bats beneficial for pest control and maintain and improve soil structure and fertility.

A Paddock Trees and Farm Vegetation Management workshop was also held in April as part of the project. Watershed Landcare invited Dhyan Blore, Principal Consultant at Native Biota Rural Ecology, to share her extensive knowledge in rural vegetation management and the establishment and care of native plants.

The workshop focused on providing landholders with knowledge and practical information to enable them to establish and mange their own native vegetation plantings, covering topics such as species selection for various sites and purposes, tree planting techniques, short term follow up and later management, including thinning and grazing.

Want to find out more about our projects and what we do? Visit our website, www.watershedlandcare.com.au, or contact one of our Coordinators, Claudia Wythes on 0412 011 064 or Agness Knapik on 0435 055 493 or email: info@watershedlandcare.com.au.

This project is supported by Watershed Landcare and Central Tablelands LLS through funding from the Australian Government and is a part of the NSW Government’s Local Landcare Coordinators Initiative, supported through the partnership of Local Land Services and Landcare NSW.

What species live in your backyard?

Did you know you can explore the plant, reptile, bird and mammal species, not only on your patch but all over Australia, with just the click of a button?

The Atlas of Living Australia is a national biodiversity database founded on the principle of data sharing. The collaborative, national project provides free, online access to millions of flora and fauna occurrence records.

To find out what’s living in your area simply visit the Atlas of Living Australia website at http://www.ala.org.au, click on ‘explore by location’ and type in your postcode or location.

By aggregating biodiversity data from multiple sources, the Atlas provides the most comprehensive and accessible data set on Australia’s biodiversity ever produced. The database supports research, environmental monitoring, conservation planning, education, and citizen science projects and provides tools for users to search and analyse data.

How much do you know about the other creatures which share our backyard? For instance, did you know that 9 kola, 13 platypus, 1 feathertail glider, and over 2000 swamp wallaby sightings have been recorded within a 10 km radius of the Mudgee township?

Want to contribute? The Atlas of Living Australia relies on collaboration, users capturing and freely sharing data, and you can also get involved. If you find something interesting while you’re out and about you can submit data of your sightings to the Atlas.

Or you can get involved in one of hundreds of citizen science projects currently running all over the country and contribute to research which will help us learn more about our unique biodiversity.

New monitoring toxic algae

Are you interested in monitoring algal blooms in your dams, waterways or stock water supply?

Identifying potentially toxic blue-green algae can be difficult, as they are often confused with other prolifically growing macrophytes (water plants). But a new Algal Resource Kit and phone app make it possible for individuals to identify potentially toxic algal blooms that may occur in local creeks, rivers, farm dams and other water bodies, without the need for expensive laboratory tests.

The kit, developed by the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) through the Environmental Trust and in collaboration with government, aims to fill the gap between professional water quality personnel and the community by providing a rapid self-assessment tool.

The phone app called AlageScumID (reached by going to app store on your phone) provides step-by-step instructions to help you distinguish between toxic algae and other water plants commonly found in our waterways.

Watershed Landcare have invited Associate Professor Simon Mitrovic from UTS to run a workshop about algal blooms and to provide training in sampling, detection, and confirmation of blooms using the Algal Resource Kit.

Whether you’re a landholder wanting to keep an eye on livestock water supplies or a professional involved in the monitoring of waterways, we invite you to come along.

Professor Mitrovic’s presentation will provide an introduction to algae – the good and the bad, causes of algal blooms, remediation activities and where to go for further information and help. There will also be a practical component to the workshop where participants will get hands-on experience in using the Algal Resource Kit and phone app.

The ‘Scum School’ Algae workshop will be held from 10am-1pm on Thursday 31 May at the Lecture Room, Australian Rural Education Centre (AREC). The workshop is free to attend with lunch provided.

All welcome but RSVP is essential for catering purposes. For more information or to book your spot please contact Agness Knapik, Watershed Landcare Coordinator, on 0435 055 493 or info@watershedlandcare.com.au.

This event is supported by Watershed Landcare and is a part of the NSW Government’s Local Landcare Coordinators Initiative, supported through the partnership of Local Land Services and Landcare NSW.

How do you pick a good seed?

 Did you know you can grow your own native plants without expensive, specialist equipment? But to ensure success it’s important to start with healthy, viable seed. So how do you pick a good seed from a dud?

To get the best quality seed, start with a healthy, natural population of parent plants. Collect seed locally if possible, environmental conditions should be considered, but collecting seed from a large and genetically diverse population is much more important. Avoid neighbouring plants as they are most probably related and instead collect seed from widely spaced healthy plants. Isolated plants should also be avoided as they may not be able to cross-pollinate so are likely to carry inbred, unhealthy seed.

Want to find out more? Come along to our seed collection and propagation workshop on Sunday 6 May and gain knowledge and skills to select for viable seed, ensure successful germination and give your seedlings the best start.

Seed Success: Start with healthy, viable seed.

The workshop will be run by local ecologist, David Allworth, and local botanist, Christine McRae, and will cover basic identification features of some commonly found local plant species; why collecting locally is best; safety, permission, timing, methods, storing collected material; equipment and processing of collected material; methods and materials for propagation and the best time to sow seed.

The hands-on workshop will take participants through the tools and techniques required to select viable seed and provide plenty of actual experience in seed sieving, preparing potting mix, sowing seed and handling seedlings. The emphasis of the workshop will be introducing people to a few tricks to ensuring a good germination, and doing so at low or no cost in terms of equipment; generally most the things required to germinate plants can be found in the domestic garbage bin or in the shed.

Participants will also gain an insight into local plant ecology and have access to seed and material propagated on the day.

The seed collection and propagation workshop will be held from 9am to 12 noon on Sunday 6 May at the Straw Bale Shed, AREC. The workshop is free to attend with morning tea and lunch provided.

All welcome but RSVP is essential for catering purposes. For more information or to book your spot please contact Agness Knapik, Watershed Landcare Coordinator, on 0435 055 493 or info@watershedlandcare.com.au.

This event is supported by Watershed Landcare through funding from Michael King and Landcare Australia.