16 October 2021
Many nature-lovers who attend Wildlife Queensland’s webinars, meetings or workshops express enthusiasm for revegetating their properties with native flora. Here are 9 simple steps to getting started with your rewilding project.
Tough Covid measures in the south have resulted in a stream of new residents, all keen to get their hands dirty in the rich Queensland soil and plant native flowers, bushes, bush tucker and even larger eucalypt, corymbia and anghophora species.
Unfortunately, detailed vegetation guides can be hard to come by because the variety of species, climates, rainfall levels and soil types makes a ‘one-size fits all solution’ impossible. Short of hiring a landscape architect or ecologist to plan your new bushy backyard, where do you begin?
We hope the simple tips below help, because reduced water usage, better reticulation, decreased erosion and salinity, and improved soil quality are just some of the positives of replanting with native plants — as well, of course, as the joys of attracting wildlife!
9 Simple Steps to Bringing Back the Bush
- Queensland Globe (or biota globe) is a fantastic resource for researching how to rehabilitate your plot. Informed by data from the Queensland Herbarium, the globe’s ‘pre-clearing’ layers display the biomes and botanical species common before extensive land-clearing began. Property owners can also request a vegetation map specific to their land. While there, you might like to check out the WildNet layer to see whether any conservation-dependent fauna has been recorded on your property or nearby.
- Next, check out your local council and local Landcare group to see what initiatives or conservation partnerships they offer for landholders or ratepayers. Many councils give residents free native seedlings at least once a year, and some even allow for more tailored solutions to assist with rewilding your little patch of paradise. At the very least, most run occasional sustainability or greening workshops and environmental events that might give you tips.
- Before you head to the local native plant nursery, download Griffith University’s GroNative app and enter your postcode to get an instant list of local native plants with photos, flowering times, plant size and even a shopping list function to take to the nursery.
- You might also avail yourself of a range of helpful short guides produced by Native Plants Queensland on cultivating wildlife-friendly habitat.
- When it comes to the hard yakka and preparing the site and seedlings, Greening Australia’s Florabank Guidelines and Revegetation Guides are troves of detailed horticultural information, and Land for Wildlife produces an extensive range of detailed ecosystem factsheets that elaborate on key species, as well as tips and solutions for herbicide-free weed control and restoring farms for wildlife.
- You might also like BioCondition — a vegetation assessment framework for measuring a terrestrial ecosystem’s biodiversity values. Gardening Australia fact sheets on Bush Food for Backyards and Rare Aussie Gems (native species) are also helpful if you want to include a few edible or little-seen beauties.
- If you have more than 10 ha, carbon-offset company Greenfleet is scouting for landowners on mostly cleared properties of 10 ha or more who wish to replant with native trees from 2022. Participants maintain full ownership of the land but receive Greenfleet’s help in choosing and sourcing appropriate seedings or seeds, preparing the site and planting. Greenfleet will also assist with maintaining trees while they grow, in return claiming the carbon credits emissions absorbed. Contact Greenfleet to see whether your property is eligible.
- Rehabilitation and greening projects might also include following Wildlife Queensland’s tips on building your own nest box (or buying one from our preferred supplier Hollow Log Homes) or checking out our Living with Wildlife section for steps on how to build a frog hotel or convert your garden into a wildlife wonderland.
- Wildlife Queensland’s branches, which operate across Queensland, and the Richmond Birdwing Conservation Network often host events to supply native seedlings and favoured butterfly vines or revegetate local creeks and parks. You can also use the Griffith University GroNative app to find local plants that caterpillars prefer.
Once you get started, you’ll soon be addicted to creating a backyard, lifestyle block or farm wilderness that is as wonderful for wildlife as it is for you.
Be sure to email us before and after images so we can celebrate the rewilding on social media.