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Plantings Achieve 90% Survival Rate

Whatever else there is to say about the tumultuous year of 2020, we’ve had a good season for rainfall in southern Australia which has hugely benefited our habitat plantings at Frahns Farm, Monarto. Last week we inspected the recent revegetation and were amazed at how our seedlings are getting on. ⁣

Our 2019 plants are now well established and made it through their first harsh summer with a 90% survival rate, and over 99% of the 23,500 plants from our 2020 planting festival (already 5 months old!) have survived! The scraped topsoil has done a great job at removing weeds to give our natives big a head start. ⁣

This is on top of the tens of thousands of grasses that have germinated from our direct seeding efforts; the spear, kangaroo, and wallaby grasses sown last year have already flowered, creating an amazing waving sea of knee-high seedheads! The seedbank they have created provides an important food source for native animals, and they will germinate with the next big rains to create a thick growth of natives that will suppress any further weed growth.⁣

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This coming summer will be the real test for our new seedlings, and it will be a big effort heading out soon to manually water our plants to ensure they hold up in the heat.⁣

In the meantime, it’s been fantastic to see plants putting on vigorous new growth, including our endangered Menzel’s Wattles (?????? ????????). The profusion of spring flowers is a delight, from the pale pinks of Small Scurf Peas (?????? ??????) and Austral Trefoil (????? ?????????), the soft blues of Native Flax (????? ?????????) and Blue Heronsbill (??????? ????????), the rich magentas of Holly Grevillea (????????? ??????????) and Chocolate Lily (???????????? ????????), and the bright golden sprays of Common Everlasting (?????????????? ??????????).⁣

But the season so far has given this new habitat the best start we could have hoped for. Here’s hoping it continues and we get some big summer rains, too!⁣

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