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Regional Landcare News | Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board

May 2021



Table of contents

Learn about regenerative agriculture and viticulture with Richard Leask
Protecting Aboriginal culture and boosting ecology with Gavin Malone
Creek rescue with Geoff Hayter
Start making better use of seasonal climatic forecasts
Dung beetle numbers bounce back after bushfires
$233.8 million to improve and protect soils
Landcare welcomes $14 million for post Black Summer bushfire recovery grants to support regeneration and community resilience
State and Territory Landcare awards now open
New free resource – 2021 carbon farming manual

It’s plant giveaway time for properties affected by the Cudlee Creek fires!

Register now to pick up your free native plants at our Plant Giveaway Day on Saturday June 19, coordinated and supported by the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board. Local communities and businesses have made an amazing combined effort to grow almost 18,000 plants for the day, including Jurlique, Future Generation Natives, Hindmarsh Island Landcare Group, Kersbrook Landcare Nursery, Woodside Primary School students and Trees For Life (SA).

The Local Economic Recovery Program is being delivered in partnership between the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board and the Department of Primary Industries and Regions. It is co-funded by the Commonwealth and South Australian governments under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.

Watch this short video to find out more, or register now.


Soil structure around plant roots can give important clues to the health of the soil microbiome. Photo: Jerry Zimmer

Learn about regenerative agriculture and viticulture with Richard Leask

So, you have heard the term "regen ag", short for regenerative agriculture, and you are keen to know a bit more? Take a look at this short video where you will meet Richard Leask at his family owned vineyard in McLaren Vale. Richard is the part owner of the award winning Hither & Yon wines, business owner of Leask Agri, Nuffield scholarship recipient and a humble yet innovative leader in his field.

Richard discusses some basic principles, including looking at the property holistically, cover crops, and increasing soil health which involves two key players: soil carbon and soil microbiome.
Regenerative agriculture is redefining best practice viticulture and its potential to create healthier, more sustainable vines and crops in the face of climate change.

To learn more about Richard's journey, watch part one and part two of this short video.

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Gavin Malone, sitting next to the remnant weed swamp in Kanyanyapilla. Photo: Jerry Zimmer

Protecting Aboriginal culture and boosting ecology with Gavin Malone

Six years ago, Tatachilla landholder Gavin Malone purchased 16 hectares of land near McLaren Vale and set a goal of creating a bi-cultural ecological and cultural regenerative project. The location is known as Kanyanyapilla, and is an ancient Kaurna Meyunna campground. In this video, he shows how he’s created three different ecosystems from neglected pasture and waist high weeds, and takes us on a tour of his ‘culture shack’ which houses a unique collection of post-contact tools recovered on-site and made by the local Aboriginal people. Gavin’s dedicated revegetation efforts have led to a substantial increase in biodiversity since 2015, with over 50 bird species now recorded on the property.

Watch part one and part two now to learn more about Kanyanyapilla.

The restored landscape of Gavin's property. Photo: Jerry Zimmer

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Geoff Hayter in the restored watercourse adjacent to his vineyard. Photo: Jerry Zimmer

Creek rescue with Geoff Hayter

Do you have a creek line that's a weedy mess and don't know where to start? Take a look at this video of living legend Geoff Hayter providing tips and tricks on how to restore it to a biodiverse haven! Slowly, Geoff has been replacing ash, blackberry and dog rose with local plants such as Christmas bush, wattles and native grasses. It hasn’t happened overnight, but with time and patience, this weedy jungle has turned into a healthy watercourse. Geoff’s hard work has now been rewarded, with the watercourse providing important refuge for bats and insects, which in turn benefit his vineyard.

Check out part one and part two now if you are in need of some motivation to tackle your watercourse weeds!

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Start making better use of seasonal climatic forecasts

The Break is a free monthly newsletter provided by Dale Grey, a seasonal risk agronomist for Agriculture Victoria. For over 14 years, The Break has been providing growers with access to seasonal climate risk information in one easy location, and delivers seasonal outlooks and soil moisture.

Subscribe now, or check out the latest seasonal climate risk information for South Australia.

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A female Bubas bison, one of the dung beetle species found in the Mount Lofty Ranges. Photo: Dung Beetle Ecosystem Engineers.

Dung beetle numbers bounce back after bushfires

Dung beetles have demonstrated a remarkable ability to withstand the effects of bushfire as they bounce back in terms of both diversity and abundance after the devastating fires that scorched Australia during the 2019/2020 summer.

Read the full story.

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Photo: Jerry Zimmer

$233.8 million to improve and protect soils

The 2021–22 Budget will deliver $233.6 million in new funding to improve and protect Australia’s soil. Funding includes new incentives for farmers to encourage them to test their soil and improve productivity, profitability and participation in the Emissions Reduction Fund. The funding includes $67 million to support new food and organic waste initiatives and divert waste going into landfill.

The funding will also be used to help implement the National Soil Strategy and associated measures as part of the Commonwealth Interim Action Plan.

The National Soil Strategy will help deliver collaborative and coordinated on-ground action, research, education and monitoring. It will allow the Australian Government to work with all stakeholders, including governments, industry, research institutions, the private sector and, most importantly, farmers and land managers to help care for and improve this valuable resource. The National Soil Strategy’s vision is to ensure Australia’s soil resources are recognised and valued as a key national asset. It is vital they are sustainably managed for the benefit of our environment, economy, food and infrastructure security, health and biodiversity - now and into the future.

More information.

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Landcare welcomes $14 million for post Black Summer bushfire recovery grants to support regeneration and community resilience

Eligible local Landcare groups, environment networks and community groups working on bushfire recovery projects can now access funding of approximately $50,000 - and landscape scale partnerships projects of up to approximately $300,000 in this landmark new grants program funded by the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment.

The $14 million Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery Grants Program is supporting landcare bushfire recovery projects in seven government designated bushfire regions across Queensland, New South Wales, the Australian Capital Territory, Victoria and South Australia impacted by the Black Summer bushfires of 2019/2020. 

Apply now.

Applications close June 16.

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State and Territory Landcare awards now open

Nominations are now open for the 2021 State and Territory Landcare Awards, which recognise individuals and community groups across the country for their outstanding contributions to preserving the unique Australian landscape. The Landcare Awards support the sharing of knowledge and achievements while promoting leadership and resilience in communities.

Nominate now.

Nominations close August 16.

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New free resource – 2021 carbon farming manual

Kondinin Group has recently updated its 2015 publication “Workshop Manual: The business case for carbon farming: improving your farm’s sustainability”. This fantastic new resource is presented in a digital format that allows for quick browsing of specific sections, including the full search capabilities of the Farming Ahead news archive.

The manual covers business considerations for farm owners examining carbon offsets projects for a farm-based business, also known as carbon farming.

Carbon farming involves changing, or introducing, specific on-farm practices designed either to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, or to store carbon in the landscape, which is also known as carbon sequestration.

Register and access the manual now.

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Healthy soils webinar series – Limestone Coast Landscape Board

  • What makes a soil fertile-Wednesday, June 2 from 7pm
  • Soil carbon and biology-Wednesday, June 23 from 7pm
  • Improving productivity on Sandy Soils-Wednesday, July 28 from 7pm
  • Improving productivity on Clay Soils-Wednesday, August 18 from 7pm

RSVP to Skylea McLean

Grains Research and Development Corporation - Rhodes grass and windmill grass
June 1 – Webinar

Strategies for managing feathertop Rhodes grass and ecology/biology of windmill grass

Food South Australia Summit 2021
June 2 – Adelaide and online
Hosted by Food South Australia, the program for the annual Food South Australia Summit is carefully crafted to provide food and beverage manufacturers, producers, buyers, service providers and policy makers with essential updates and practical input from industry experts. This one-day event is designed to update you on issues and trends at the global and local level that are impacting your business and our industry.

Landcare - Sustainability in Australian Agriculture
June 3 - Webinar

Landcare Farming Manager Mick Taylor will sit down with Tess Herbert, Chair of the Sustainability Steering Group, Professor Bruce Allworth, Chair of the Sheep Sustainability Framework, and Phil Tickle, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Cibo Labs, to discuss sustainability across the agricultural industry.

Grains Research and Development Corporation - Glyphosate resistant broadleaves
June 8 – Webinar

Strategies for managing glyphosate resistant broadleaves (sowthistle and fleabane)

Block 69 Re-vegetation: Birds, Bugs and Butterflies
June 17 – Encounter Lutheran College

RSVP to harrison.sires@encounter.sa.edu.au

2021 National Landcare Conference
August 4-6 - International Convention Centre, Sydney

Major themes include sustainable agriculture, environment and climate change, community partnerships in action and Landcare impact.

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If you have a story or event to promote, please email the Regional Agriculture Landcare Facilitator for the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board, Sophie Bass, at sophie.bass@sa.gov.au.

The Regional Agriculture Landcare Facilitator Program is funded by the Australian Government's National Landcare Program.

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