Southern Dirt/State NRM Project

Southern Dirt/State NRM Project.

via Southern Dirt/State NRM Project.

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Jezabelle walking over to inspect the SWCC regeneration project

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10.5 months later – amazing!

We have just returned from the farm and are amazed by the growth and health of the plants. We have had a long hot summer and they are thriving. The summer has officially ended, although we have had no rain. The days are a little cooler, early to mid 20’s and the nights around 10. It is a loverly time at the farm before the business of planting this seasons crops.

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The plant is nearly as tall as Jorn!

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Jezabelle supervising us as usual

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a few of our thriving plants

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Along one of the rows to give you an idea

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Jorn swimming in a spring fed pool in Cockatoo Creek, the water is beautiful, clear and drinkable.

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a few more rows to give you an idea of the scope of the project

Video

Growing growing growing

Jorn has just returned from the farm. He decided to take a short video showing how well our plants are going. It is very exciting watching them thrive. Jorn has just returned, the new project underway at the farm it to rebuild the bridge crossing over the start of the Tone River. Jorn has started to construct a log bridge over the River. This will greatly assist the flow of the Cockatoo Creek into the Tone River. Our dream from a few years ago about restoring the bio-diversity, depth and beauty of the waterway and its local environment are coming true.

Stay tuned – bridge building posts will soon follow!

Happy days

Happy days

Everywhere we have planted is growing beautifully.

Everywhere we have planted is growing beautifully.

Remember this is how they started. There are 30 plants per tray. You are looking at many trays!

Remember this is how they started. There are 30 plants per tray. You are looking at many trays!

Environmental Community Grant work complete!

photoWe woke to mist, light rain and an overcast day. We have come down to put the finishing touches on the ECG Grant project at Bellalea.

A wash away fence across the Cockatoo Creek/Tone River has been installed.

The creek and river are subject to flooding and wild storms at times see fence lines washed away. Jorn has installed a fence line that is designed to wash away in these events without affecting the main fence line.

A first for the farm, the first ever gates have now been installed. Usually cocky gates are installed however the kangaroos make short shrift of them. We were advised to install real gates for the regeneration projects. Jorn was excited swinging them. We are sure his dad is watching on from above and is delighted.

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Jorn with the gates.

Jorn with the gates.

we’ve only just begun!

We have signed of on one of our two projects. In this one project 52 hectares has been given back to assist regeneration of of the creek and river system. By the time we add both projects together over 100 hectares is now forming a corridor for wildlife and an ambitious regeneration plan to improve the biodiversity of the area.Image

Plants, plants everywhere there are plants

We would load up our buckets full of a variety of differing species and head down a mound.

We would load up our buckets full of a variety of differing species and head down a mound.

Carol and Cassie back at the trailer for more plants. Sometimes it seemed endless, head down and off we go - again....
Carol and Cassie back at the trailer for more plants. Sometimes it seemed endless, head down and off we go – again….

Yes we could always rely of Jezabel the dogess to cast her knowing eye over the proceedings.

Yes we could always rely of Jezabel the dogess to cast her knowing eye over the proceedings.

We fed everybody a hearty lunch. A combination of red lentil and spicy carrot soup, and a harissa soup with sourdough garlic bread, followed up with fruit and Evelyns fruits and nut cake. Yum!

We fed everybody a hearty lunch. A combination of red lentil and spicy carrot soup, and a harissa soup with sourdough garlic bread, followed up with fruit and Evelyns fruits and nut cake. Yum!

Potty what? Ki, eh????

Jorn and Steve with two pottutkis he has loaned us to assist with the planting

Jorn and Steve with two pottutkis he has loaned us to assist with the planting

Phew a Pottiputki is an amazing Finnish invention from the 1970’s. specifically designed for manual tree planting. You may recall we have just under 18,000 to plant over the upcoming long weekend. Steve Blyth from Blyth Tree Farm supplied two of the planters we used. Local farmers, the Warberton’s supplied another two and good friend David Lee loaned another.  Fully kitted out of we set.

the planter strikes the Pottiputki  into the ground, you put the plant down the tube and stamp on the slide at the bottom of the devise. The mechanism does the planting as at the bottom of the devise are two claws that look a little like a duckbill. They open after pushing an opening into the ground for the plant. The claws open and drop the plant into the slot, you push the soil bank at your foot in to seal the young seedling into position and move on. Simple, especially 18,000 odd times……..

Well we were an odd wonderful lot of humans and the doggess Jezabel. Hard going left use thinking,….. Jorn Ramel came up with version two, an old 50 odd cm hexagon shaped wooden rod (a former roller from a blind), a a series of 50cm PVC tubes. One person went ahead stamping a slot into the ground and the planters followed, putting the plant down thw tube, stamping it closed and onto the next hole. Horray, horray, horray. EASY…. That is what we like.

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Jorn now with the wooden stamper…. i persevered with the pottiputki. Later I actually like to use it over the tubes.

Grounded pottiputki!
Grounded pottiputki!

Stolen!

Where is the wire? Exclaimed a bewildered Jorn as we crossed Cockatoo Creek on a pre- planting inspection.  Somebodies……… What ………. Where…….. Stunned as we realise we have missed an entire section of  wire…… And it is raining …….. More fencing in the rain…….. At least it is a small section ………

Back to it, the backhoe will strain the wire after we roll it out

Back to it, the backhoe will strain the wire after we roll it out

Looking down the 'stolen' line of fence wire ....... Don't we feel silly .....

Looking down the ‘stolen’ line of fence wire ……. Don’t we feel silly …..

Jezabel the doggess supervsing to ensure we actually complete the job...... This time......

Jezabel the doggess supervsing to ensure we actually complete the job…… This time……