One of the pleasant tasks of life at the ecovillage is maintaining and regenerating the native bushland on the property. The village is situated next to the renowned Strickland State Forest, and forms with it an unbroken corridor of forest on ridge-land and slopes down into the Narara Valley. A volunteer team meets weekly to go into the forest and help maintain the pristine bushland on the upper ridge and slopes, as well as clearing thickets of woody weeds lower down in the gullies and river flats of the property.
Following guidelines set out in reports by professional ecologists, and with the help and guidance of professional bush regenerators from the local Coastal Environment Network, volunteers have cleared ever increasing areas of lantana, privet and other weedy plants. Part of the work is replanting local species to fill the gaps left by the removal of weeds. We have run workshops and working bees to learn and practice weed removal and planting, under the guidance of local experts, so that the work is part of an ongoing learning process on how to look after our treasured environment.
We have been able to open up beautiful areas of woodland and deep shady gullies, to be enjoyed by the residents and visitors to the village. The work helps with the maintenance of biodiversity, by ensuring habitat for the varying species that live in the area. Monitoring of the local flora and fauna over time in the areas of regeneration allows us to evaluate the work in terms of overall biodiversity.
It is an ongoing process of slowly reducing weedy areas, assisting regrowth of native plants, and maintaining the progress that we have made. The pleasure is in seeing the transformation from sometimes impenetrable weed-infested tracts into beautiful, peaceful and inspirational areas of our local bushland.
This area had been completely filled with impassable lantana and other woody weeds. Now it is a beautiful, shady retreat from the heat of summer.