The water and surrounding river banks of the Mittagong Creek through Centennial Park in Bowral are today healthier thanks to the efforts of more than sixty volunteers who donated their time and efforts last Saturday 20 October.
Nine students and a teacher from St Paul’s International College in Moss Vale, a dozen volunteers from the local Ba’hai community, Scouts and Venturers from both the Bowral and Mittagong troops, Bushcare volunteers, community elders and councilors Graham McLaughlin and Larry Whipper were just some of the volunteers who rolled up their sleeves to help restore the site as part of Council’s National Tree Day Wingecarribee.
The eldest volunteer was 87 year old Muriel Stuart who has lived in the area for 76 years and who is a foundation member of the new Centennial Park Bushcare group.
Staff from Council’s Bushcare team and Environment and Sustainability branch set up the site early before the first volunteers arrived at 8.30am for the three and half hour marathon planting event.
The volunteers planted, tree guarded and watered some 800 plants over the course of the morning before enjoying a sausage sizzle cooked by members of the Bowral Lions Club.
Work on the site began some months prior to the weekend’s ‘working bee’ when staff from Council poisoned, removed and chipped the existing Privets, White Poplars, Blackberry and Ivy vines.
Combined with the weekend’s mass planting, water quality is now expected to improve downstream as is the creek bank’s stability. Other benefits expected include an increase in local wildlife thanks to the restoration of native habitats.
Further planting is planned for November when both Frensham College and downstream landholders will undertake further creek restoration works supported by the Hawkesbury Nepean Catchment Management Authority.
National Tree Day Wingecarribee is an annual event organised in conjunction with Planet Ark.
The Mittagong Creek re-vegetation project is part of Council’s River Health and Wetlands program and is funded via Council’s Environment Levy.