TRILLION TREES NEWS

FEBRUARY 2020

Get Ready for the 2020 Planting Season

Our tree planting events for 2020 are almost finalised, and with our tree planting season running from June to September  there’s not long to go!

We will advertise these events in our monthly Trillion Trees Newsletter, through Facebook and on our Website Calendar from around the beginning of April. If you've previously registered with us as a Volunteer then you'll be notified by email. If not, then you can always UPDATE YOUR PREFERENCES.

We look forward to you joining us.

Dr Sandra Krempl, CEO

Landcare Workshop with the Forever Project

This month staff and volunteers attended an invaluable workshop led by Chris Ferreira at SERCUL.The focus was on the basics of soil evaluation, species identification and weed control – essentials of landcare that are so important as we plan our next planting season and maintain previous plantings.

The better we can ‘read’ a site and the innumerable factors contributing to its health (or degradation), the more success we’re going to have in rehabilitating this wonderful corner of the world. Key points:


 “The right plant, in the right place, for the right reasons” :  Trillion Trees is focused on biodiversity and rehabilitation of degraded landscapes, endemic (local) species are our go-to for rejuvenating local ecosystems and the information about endemic species is usually collected from a survey of the surrounding areas at ~5-7km radius. However, an area might be so degraded that endemic species won’t survive the conditions – in these cases we target hardy and fast-growing species that will beat the weeds and still achieve great work! 

Key soil factors: We have 5 main soil types in the Perth region, from the clay and loam of the scarp down to the alkaline sands of the coastal plain. SERCUL have some great resources about these soil types and the plant species that flourish in each one.
Compaction - Remember some of the rock-hard soils we were planting in last year? Soil compaction is problematic, since it doesn’t allow moisture to collect in the ground, prevents aeration, and makes it hard for young tree roots to get down and dirty. Deep ripping along contour lines fractures the hard earth and catches water, allowing it to seep in an replenish sub-surface moisture.
Water Repellence - breakdown of organic materials (such as eucalypt leaves) produces a wax by-product, resulting in the vexingly hydrophobic characteristics of our sandy soils. Soil-wetter, which works to break down the wax, is a great solution to getting water down in the ground during the rains.
Weeds - it’s an endless ‘war!’ If you’re up against annuals, then you can be sure there’s an arsenal of seed-burden stocked up in the area which can become more voracious if the soil is disturbed while digging and planting. It’s possible to suppress seed germination with mulch). Perennial weeds pose a greater challenge, particularly cooch and kikuyu grasses that grow from rhisomes deeper in the soil and are very labour intensive to remove by hand. It’s advisable to plant species which can outstrip these weeds quickly (e.g. the flooded river gum)..  ·


Maintenance: planted seedlings need to be looked after. Once the initial planting work is done, it’s crucial to control weeds and water seedlings to help them get a great start and keep the survival rate as high as we can. Generally, seedlings may need our help for 18-24 months to get well established!.

Noni Oldfield
Member and Volunteer
Help us kick start 2020

Million Trees Schools Program gets underway

Its been a busy start to the Million Trees Schools program for 2020 with John Winter and the team visiting Riverton Primary School (pictured with John Winter), Hale Junior School, City Beach Primary School and Victoria Park Scouts.this month.

Want to get your school involved? Contact John Winter, Million Trees Program Coordinator, on john@trilliontrees.org.au

Thank You Trillion Trees

This month we received the following inspirational update from Bronwyn and Peter Humphreys thanking Trillion Trees for our contribution to their biodiversity conservation project in Talbot. Pictured above is Peter (2m tall) alongside trees (5m) planted only 4-and-a-half years ago!

Since 2015, Peter and I have been revegetating 35 of our 40 acres in the upper catchment of the Wittenoom creek that flows into the Avon river south of York, Western Australia. We estimate we have now planted 25 000 local species.

We wish to sincerely thank Trillion Trees, as an organisation and as individuals, for your contribution to this conservation biodiversity project.

In our inaugural revegetation year, 2015, we were supported by 26 volunteers from 5 different community groups on a planting day, planting about 6000 local species. This included Trillion Trees providing 1500 local creek species and about 7 volunteers from Perth. There are a lot of reasons we wish to thank Trillion Trees:

· The contribution of 1500 local creek plants;
· The contribution of volunteers to assist in planting 6000 trees in a day;
· The contribution of the very best quality plants we have ever acquired;
· The subsequent contribution to reduction of wind and water erosion and salt; and
· The resultant contribution to habitat.
· Trillion Trees initial revegetation in 2015 provided a sympathetic environment for the next 4 years of extended revegetation.

Since 2015 we have eradicated calthrop, wire weed, two types of paddy melon, and 20 acres of double gees using elbow grease; we have had no stock, herbicides or fertilisers. We are off grid and have a 240 000-litre supply of fresh water. In 2015, the area that we have revegetated was a wind-swept, salt encrusted, moonscape. There was no life or food web, save a declared weed or two.

In 2015, we recorded 5 species of birds. Since the revegetation project we have now recorded more than 50 bird species; we have recorded a variety of snakes, lizards, insects, frogs, euros, kangaroos, echidnas and a possum. There has been, surprisingly, natural revegetation of native grasses, salt bush, marsh herbage, samphire, mulla mulla, acacias, casuarinas and eucalypts.

Within a year of destocking and being herbicide free, the biomass of existing trees on our property, outside our reveg area, increased dramatically and has continued to do so each year. This has provided much needed habitat for fauna, wind breaks, shade and temperature reduction. The leaves of the trees have changed from brown/grey, to a verdant green.

It has not been all beer and skittles. We have had herbicide over spray from adjacent farms resulting in hundreds of our seedlings being destroyed; we have had stock invasions from 4 different farms, we have had fences destroyed by neighbours’ stock, we have had gruelling summers and up to 9 months of no rain in one year. Prior to the second calicivirus release, rabbits ate our new plants. The kangaroos have eaten many plants. This year we have collected about a million seeds from the 2015 initial revegetation. We will scatter these in rip line. We have about 1000 seedlings of local species Verticordia, Grevillea, Senna, Frankenia, Eremophila, Acacia and Eucalypts ready for planting this winter.

When we have people from organisations such as Trillion Trees walking beside us during this project, it provides a much-needed morale boost. It is hard to express in words the impact of your contribution. Thankyou Trillion Trees.


Bronwyn Humphreys

Thankyou Bunzl

Our sincere thanks to Mimmo Audino from BUNZL who kindly donated some paper towel dispensers and soap dispensers to us this month. 
 
A world audit of trees in 2015 shows there are just 3 trillion trees left in the world - that's half what there used to be. 

We, as a global community, need a new tree planting target - to plant 1 trillion trees! If each person in the world plants 140 trees, we will achieve this!
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