This week I had a walk in the Canadian Regional Park and after the rain everything was looking fresh. The park is on the edge of Ballarat and has some lovely patches of grass trees. In the spring there are masses of wildflowers. It is a favourite place for those who ride mountain bikes and many people use it for walking and exercising their dogs. If you visit you will probably see a Parks Victoria Ranger, as the park is under new management.
someone has been enjoying some nature play
Cherry Ballart front and centre
dodder vine is climbing up to get more light
Grass Trees are a wonderful feature of this park
The Ecolinc Sustainability Expo on Sunday 26th March 2017 is a fun-filled community learning event. Highlights include: workshops, demonstrations, market, talk to the techsperts, food, music, competitions and much, much more. It is a free family event.
There is so much happening that you need to go to this link to see what is on offer. Learn how to make a nest box or watch the bird of prey demonstration.
Ecolinc is at 17-23 Labilliere Street, Bacchus Marsh Bacchus Marsh and just a stroll through Maddingley Park from the railway station.
When you clear up around your property for fire prevention, do you ever think about echidnas? Heaps of bark and leaves raked up from around the house make an ideal place for short-beaked echidnas to hide their young.
If you want to make some echidna habitat then make sure the heaps are well away from your house. Echidnas also hide their young in heaps of branches that you may have put aside for a fire heap. They also take advantage of a pile of mulch. Continue reading
Billardiera fusiformis, Bluebell Creeper, is a vigorous twining shrub grows naturally in WA, but in Victoria is an environmental weed in bushland. The flowers are blue followed by purplish/green cylindrical berries.
The shrubs are flowering now, so are easy to spot to remove. Birds eat the berries and spread the plants. The plant then smothers other plants. They are easy to pull out when small. Recently I have seen it flowering on roadsides in Gordon, Mt Doran, Mt Egerton and Scarsdale. It used to be called Sollya heterophylla.
Bursaria spinulosa Sweet Bursaria
You may have noticed this large native shrub that has white flowers. It attracts a wide range of insects and lots of butterflies and has a sweet fragrance. Most shrubs are now developing seed. If you grow your own plants then sweet bursaria seed is best collected as the pods dry and open. You will have more success if you use fresh seed to grow your own plants. They are a good habitat plant for small birds.
This is a good time to carry out control of this invasive weed. If you wait until the berries form, birds and foxes will eat the fruit and continue the spread across the countryside. Don’t put off weed control, start with isolated small plants then move onto the larger clumps. If you can’t afford to spray all the weeds at least start by spraying around the edge of larger clumps to stop the outward spread.
If you like to collect and eat blackberries make sure they haven’t been sprayed.
A citizen science survey conducted this month will lead to the development of bird feeding and watering guidelines. Is feeding birds a good idea? This survey will help to provide some science behind the recommendations. If you take part in this survey you will be able to access the results. Here is the link to the survey.