Local botanists led three inspiring vegetation identification field days for the CMN last Spring (2010). These explored three very different landscapes across the Shire, in Towamba, Brogo and Tathra and brought together folks who share a passion for native plants and land management.
Towamba was the perfect place for our Dry Grassy Woodlands day with Paul McPherson. The Towamba hills which circle the valley were wreathed in white clouds. Flowers such as Milkmaids, Tiger Orchids, Curved Rice Flowers, Creeping Bossiaea and Pale Sundew were abundant between the Kangaroo grass tussocks. The drenching thunderstorm at the end of our field day gave us a chance to get wet in Paul Zallicos’ excellent patch of ‘Bega Wet Shrub Forest’.
Our Brogo adventure unfolded at the Bush Heritage reserve, a 120 hectare property purchased for conservation in 1995 by Bush Heritage Australia. The reserve includes Brogo Wet Vine Forest, Bega Wet Shrub Forest, Dry Rainforest and Warm Temperate Rainforest. Jackie Miles demonstrated how to identify different eucalypts and where they occur in the landscape before guiding us to a shady gully of Yellow-woods (Achronychia oblongifolia) and beneath Port Jackson figs festooned with vines. A feature of the reserve is the large granite outcrops which provide protection for rainforest species sensitive to frost, fire and browsing animals.
Stuart Cameron’s botanical tour of Tathra could have gone on for a whole day, with so many different vegetation communities to explore in this coastal area. Stuart’s introductory talk was a highlight and is printed on page one for your delight.
What a great way to spend a Saturday.