Replanting pockets of the Nambucca Valley

Yesterday, November 8, was a difficult day for many in our community, as they marked the first anniversary of the 'Kian Rd Fire', a catastrophe the extent of which has never previously touched our tiny shire.

Today, Monday, is another day, a fresh one, filled with promise and hope and to this end we offer you this heart-warming story of how volunteers are working to replant what 12 months ago was a charred black landscape ...

Landcare volunteers replanting in the South Arm Creek headwaters

Landcare volunteers replanting in the South Arm Creek headwaters

Logan Zingus has been busy, very busy.

The Nambucca Valley Landcare coordinator is overseeing the plantings around the shire, made possible thanks to the fundraising efforts of groups such as North Arm Farms.

"There are several plantings underway in collaboration with 20 landholders," Logan said.

"We've got a budget of $55,000 thanks to a couple of grants, North Arm Farms plus $50,000 from the council and we are doing a range of different plantings using a variety of techniques.

"In some areas it is all about weed control, in others it is about stock exclusion fencing, especially in riparian zones.

"It is a brilliant project and we have 1800 trees ready to go into the ground ... we've done a couple of small plantings already and now with this recent rain we can do more.

"We had a community planting day up South Arm in October, the idea being that people help each other on their farms.

Annual weeds are doing us a favour right now - they are protecting young plants and holding the soil together

Logan Zingus, Nambucca Valley Landcare

"Landholders are working together to replant the riparian and rainforest zones that were burnt with extreme intensity last year. Many of these wetter forest species aren't adapted to fire and unlike eucalypts, they don't have effective strategies for regenerating after a hot fire.

"First we cleared around the few native pioneers, removed the dense weeds infesting the top of the bank, and planted 100 native riparian trees to help restore the function and condition of the South Arm Creek headwaters (volunteers included Caitlin, Jyoti, Petra, Lucy and Darren)."

Logan said areas were proving resilient but recovery was slow.

"We have to be patient ... when you peel back the weeds you see the good things that are there but these areas are so sensitive, walking through them is potentially harmful. We are watching and waiting."

Plantings will continue in autumn when there is hopefully plenty of moisture to help the plants thrive.

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