The western fence line of Intueri is being planted out with a selection of local native grasses shrubs and trees to help protect the property from hot and often strong W, SW and NW winds. Fortunately this project falls within Landcare rural rehabilitation and will be likely to receive funding for the large bulk of the plants.
As the area to be planted is very exposed I jumped the gun and decided to plant out a 108m2 area as test site and just to get things moving along as funding may not appear until spring 2013. This equates to 160 plants in close 1m spacing that can be thinned out as time goes by.
Fortunately we have Armidale Tree Group to source a big range of local species and buying in bulk helps reduce the costs and they provided an hand powered Auger to help dig the holes. The plantings not only serve as a windbreak but also as native habitat and wildlife corridor and by selecting several species of Acacia I will be helping to increase the Nitrogen levels in the soil. I have provided a link below to the plant list.
Fencing may be required but for now I am using 2L waxed cardboard tree guards I found on the ERA website site from VIC. These gaurds are very affordable and easy to use, a really clever design with serrated pop out holes and folds for inserting the bamboo stakes that are also provided. It took a few mornings to get all these plants in and I fitted the guards in the afternoons. My top tank of dam water also has a line running across to the are being planted to make watering easy.
To prepare the area I had my local Tree Lopper deliver several big loads of wood chips that were then spread 25cm thick over the area to be planted. This was done a few months in advance so the chips had time to break down and also moisten the soil underneath. The beauty of this is that now when planting I don’t need to go in around each plant and mulch. It has suppressed the weeds too.
Now all I have to do is hope the local Roo’s don’t get too curious – which from past plantings they aren’t so interested.