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2017 - February 2017 May 2017
Geographic focus: Mount Painter Nature Reserve
Regular Meetings: The FOMP committee meets when necessary, generally once every three months. Please contact us on 0424 263 565 for meeting details.
Regular Activities and Working Parties: We meet at Mt Painter Nature Reserve in the morning of the third Sunday of every month at times that vary according to the season. Contact us for details of venue and time, or look at the Email Update on Ginninderra Catchment Group’s home page. Activities include weeding, planting and erosion control. The work party generally includes a break for morning tea.
Volunteer coordinator - Sarah Hnatiuk 6251 2228, mob. 0424 263 565, email to email@example.com
The Friends of Mt Painter Park Care Group (FOMP) was formed in 1989 by several Cook citizens concerned about the deterioration of ecological balance on Mount Painter because of weeds and erosion. FOMP was instrumental in having all public land to the south of Cook down to William Hovell Drive (excluding the rural leases) declared a nature reserve under ACT legislation in 1993. And in 1996, the hilltop paddock was taken out of grazing and began to be managed as part of Canberra Nature Park.
FOMP is focused on restoring Mt Painter to a healthy and functioning grassy woodland ecosystem, dominated by endemic eucalypt species such as Yellow Box, Blakely’s Red Gum, Apple Box, plus shrubs and native grasses. Removing invasive weeds and planting trees, shrubs and grasses are the main activities, aimed at regenerating the endemic native vegetation. Over 6,000 native trees, shrubs and grasses have been planted since 1996, but recent plantings have suffered from the big dry and grazing from the large population of kangaroos on Mt Painter. Plantings have broadly been in line with a 2000 revegetation plan prepared by David Hogg. A flora survey conducted in November 2003, with the help of Dr Michael Mulvaney, found 82 native species and 83 exotic species on Mt Painter.
Natural regeneration is occurring, including Apple and Yellow Box, some Acacias (mainly Hickory Wattle) and a few Kurrajongs. Native herbaceous plants are also extending considerably, notably: i) Cotton Fireweed (Senecio quadridentatus), spreading quite widely in the better-watered parts of the reserve, where it is becoming a quite major and welcome competitor to Saffron Thistle; ii) Willowherb (Epilobium billardierianum); iii) Nodding Saltbush (Einadia nutans); iv) New Holland Daisy (Vittadinia spp.); v) Bluebell (Wahlenbergia spp.); and vi) Rock Fern (Cheilanthes austrotenuifolia).
Weeds that are targeted on Mt Painter include:
Saffron thistle. These thistles present the biggest problem in the Reserve. There was an estimated 100 million thistles around the summit in 1996. This number was reduced to about 24 million in 2003;
Other large thistles such as Variegated, Scotch, Spear. Vernon Bailey has virtually removed all of these large thistles from around the mature eucalypts;
Herbaceous weeds such as Deadly Nightshade, Prickly Lettuce, Fleabanes, Hedge Mustard, Horehound, Amaranthus, St John’s Wort, Bathurst Burr and Paterson’s Curse; and
Woody weeds such as Hawthorn, Briar Rose, Firethorn, Cotoneaster, Nettle tree, Pistachio, Tree of Heaven, Privet, and Blackberry.
FOMP has a membership list of 65 people who receive regular email bulletins. There are about 10 active volunteers. Working parties are generally held on the third Sunday of each month. Several individual volunteers have undertaken to look after a particular patch of their own, chosen jointly with the volunteer coordinator.
Click here to download the Plant List for Mt Painter Wildflower Triangle
New volunteers are always welcome to join us.