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Native Plantings

The cornerstone of Bio·R’s work involves putting plants in the ground; since 2007 we have reconstructed hundreds of hectares of habitat to support our wildlife.

Reconstructing better habitats

Bio·R exists to go beyond traditional revegetation methods, aiming to reconstruct effective, self-sustaining and resilient habitats. Effective habitat supports wildlife, providing all the resources an animal needs, such as food and shelter. Self-sustaining habitat is where the plants and animals are able to reproduce adequately to maintain their abundance through time. Resilient habitats are those that can cope with and recover from short-term perturbations like droughts and fire, as well as the long-term impacts of climate change.

These goals will ensure our native plantings will provide habitat that can best support our declining wildlife in perpetuity.

How do we plan our plantings?

Thorough research and extensive on-ground knowledge, we determine the types of habitat that once existed on different parts of properties using features such as soil and topography, and the plant species found in remnant vegetation.

Observations on the spacing of individual plants of different species, on their branching patterns and how they are intermingled with other plants provide not only a template to guide new plantings, but also a basis against which newly reconstructed habitats can be compared and success ultimately judged.

We use both tubestock seedlings and direct seeding to ensure the diversity and abundance of plant species best emulates productive, biodiverse habitats.

For future resilience in the face of climate change, we also select species that are likely to perform better under hotter and drier conditions, as well as plants sourced from more arid areas. 

When and where do we plant?

The flagship of our habitat reconstruction efforts are our planting festivals. We run these annually, in June, and our work is currently focused on restoring the 550 hectare property at Frahns Farm, Monarto in the eastern Mount Lofty Ranges. We have previously held planting festivals on Cygnet Park Sanctuary, Kangaroo Island.

How are plantings maintained?

Rarely are revegetated areas managed and monitored to look at factors like plant survival and vigour, grazing impacts, weed control and wildlife outcomes.

Revegetation takes decades of care and management, and these steps are crucial if we are to ensure plantings provide all the resources needed for animals to call them home in the long term.

In drier regions, such as at Frahns Farm, Monarto, watering seedlings is vital in the first year after planting to maintain high survival, and our team makes the effort to water over the summer months to give all our plants the best chance to grow deep roots and thrive over coming decades.

How can you get involved?

Donors and volunteers are crucial to support our annual planting festivals. If you are interested in helping, please consider making a regular donation to support our work and subscribing to our newsletter for updates about volunteer opportunities at planting festivals and watering days.

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