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The Paddock
The Paddock
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Burt Road, Woodanilling, Western Australia, AU
Climate zone:
Warm Temperate

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The Paddock

The Paddock

Woodanilling, AU

Alexandra Berendt Andrew Williamson Janice Ross Salah Hammad Terry Haven Valeria Andrews Zeljko Serdar

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200 Trees, Shrubs and Herbs are in!

Project: The Paddock

Posted by Amanda McLennan almost 11 years ago

How we planted all 200 plants in a weekend (with help) and survival rates so far

After picking up 200 trees, shrubs and herbs from the Native Plant Nursery on May 15th we drove straight down to The Paddock to prepare for the planting. We had 4 types of trees (98 total), 6 types of shrubs (64 total) and 2 herbs (both kangaroo paw: 38 in total) and a friend to help us plant them all.

We spent one full day of preparing the area: we had drawn on an overhead map where we wanted the plantings to go. We have a small copse of fully-grown swamp she-oak currently on the property, so we used this as a starting point and planted the trees in clumps (rather than rows) about 2 metres apart. See the diagram below for the approximate shape of our plantings (please note the drawing is not to scale).

We left a gap of about 5-6 metres away from the fully-grown trees so they seedlings don't have too much competition, and we will back-fill this gap with tagasaste which already grows onsite and is transplanted easily. The 2 metre spacing between trees was decided on knowing that some trees would need to be cut back as they grow (this is a very tight planting) however we are aiming at producing a windbreak from the prevailing gusts so were advised by Land for Wildlife that a tight spacing is fine under these circumstances.

Between the trees at about 1 metre apart the shrubs have been planted to create a solid wind barrier (once they've grown) that curves in a north-easterly direction. Our prevailing winds are from the west or north, so this should give us a windbreak from either direction. We then used a combination of shrubs and herbs to produce triangle shapes pointing out towards the east. This will (hopefully) create three different pockets in amongst the revegetation for orchards of olives, citrus and nuts.

Our previous attempts at growing citrus were ruined when all the leaves were blown off the trees in a few very strong storms. The plan is that the native trees we plant not only introduce native species back to the area (the largest number of trees planted were rock she-oak which are native habitat to the endangered red-tailed phascogale, local to our area); but they also reduce the risk of salt affecting our land as well as allowing us to plant orchards in sheltered pockets of land.

How we planted:

We had 20 Eco-bags which we used on the larger of the seedlings (which would need the most water supply), and enough materials to make about 60 tree guards. For each tree we dug a hole about half a metre square, placed in the tubestock and planted the seedling. Before returning all the soil to the hole we placed cardboard around the seedling then turned the soil clods that had been dug out over on top of the cardboard, so we kept the topsoil in place but the grass was now upside down with the roots in the air. We then hammered three posts around each seedling and used a nail-gun to attach rolls of left-over shade-cloth and calico to form simple tree-guards. We then filled and placed the eco-bags where required.

The process got faster and faster as we ran out of eco-bags first, then tree-guard materials. By the end of the first day we had planted about 80 trees and were sore and exhausted. The second day was much easier without the fuss of either the eco-bags or tree-guards and we planted the remaining 120 plants by about 3.30pm - the holes we dug for the kangaroo paw were substantially smaller and we had even run out of cardboard by this point, so they went in a simple hole in the ground.

Luckily for us the day after we finished it rained gently and steadily all day - perfect watering in weather! So we had an enforced day of rest while our watering was done for us. There were a few more showers over the next few days so we left feeling confident about survival rates in the short term.

It has now been 3 weeks since everything was planted and we have only lost one shrub: it has simply disappeared so I think the plant was nibbled down to nothingness. One of the kangaroo paw had all its leaves chewed off (except one) and it had been pulled out of the ground and its roots nibbled too! We re-planted it and so far it seems to have survived the experience, although time will tell.

Over time we will see how the trees with the eco-bags and tree-guards do versus the trees with neither, so next year when we repeat the process we will know what we require. It takes a long time to use both the eco-bags and tree guards but if it significantly improves survival rates, then it'll be worth it.


Field of planting May 2013 planting plan Planting1 Planting2 Planting3

Comments (1)

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Zeljko Serdar
Zeljko Serdar : All the best.
Posted over 6 years ago

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