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Regional Landcare News | Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board

November 2021


Sophie Bass inspects a soil sample at a recent regenerative agriculture field day - Photo: Jodie Pain


Table of contents

K1 Winery Regenerative Agriculture Gathering
The "Towards Eradication: 20 Weeds by 2023" project gaining momentum !
An Introduction to Regenerative Agriculture
Healthy Soils, Healthy Landscapes project - soil plot trials
SA State Landcare Awards – nominations open until Dec 6th 2021
Winners of the Spirit of Agriculture Awards announced
Multi species summer fodder cropping demonstration underway
A Guide to Aboriginal Knowledge and Values of the Fleurieu Peninsula Swamps.
Call for abstracts - 2022 National Landcare Conference

Farewell.... and welcome...

The Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board recently farewelled Regional Agriculture Landcare Facilitator (RALF) Sophie Bass. Sophie has moved on to a new role as a wildlife ecologist at DEW. Sophie has done a great job over a number of years, working with local landowners to champion sustainable and regenerative agricultural practices and to provide a range of information, resources and advice. The Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board thanks Sophie for her great work and wishes her all the best in her new position.

The new RALF for the Hills and Fleurieu region is Jim Mead, who comes to the position from a project management role with Conservation Volunteers Australia and a recent on-ground direct seeding contract with Landcare Australia. Jim is based at the Willunga office and his contact details are 0408 678 890 or jim.mead@sa.gov.au.

Upcoming events for your calendar:

  • Friday 19th November 2021 - National Agriculture Day. For more information, go to:   

​             https://www.agday.org.au/get-involved

  • Wednesday 24th November 2021: An Introduction to Regenerative Agriculture workshop and networking event, Strathalbyn​​

https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/introduction-to-  regenerative-agriculture-tickets-194091341427

  • 4th and 6th December 2021 - Multi species summer fodder cropping demonstration field days 

  • 23rd to 25th August 2022 - National Landcare Conference, Sydney - call for abstracts now open.


The regenerative agriculture gathering was held at K1 Winery in October. - Photo A.Russo

K1 Winery Regenerative Agriculture Gathering

A community regenerative agriculture gathering was held at Kuitpo, on Sunday the 17th October. The event was hosted by Jess Hardy and her father Geoff Hardy at their beautiful K1 Winery. The vineyard was the first vineyard established in the Kuitpo area 36 years ago by Geoff – hence the name K1. The gathering aimed to bring together like minded landowners in the Hills and Fleurieu region who are interested in applying regenerative agriculture principles to their property. Participants on the day ranged from young people studying regenerative agriculture, to young couples who had just purchased properties, to long term landowners looking to change their land management approach. The day was an informal social gathering, with ample opportunity to chat to others about where they were at with applying regenerative agriculture principles on their properties. Attendees shared a lunch prepared by Jess’ partner Nathan, accompanied by some beautiful K1 wines. If you would like to get involved in a Hills and Fleurieu Regenerative Agriculture Network, read the article below to find out more. 

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African Lovegrass on a Fleurieu roadside - Photo Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board

The "Towards Eradication: 20 Weeds by 2023" project gaining momentum !

The "Towards Eradication: 20 Weeds by 2023" project has been designed to target the 20 most invasive weeds found in the Hills and Fleurieu Region. The project is supported by the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board in partnership with the councils of – Adelaide Hills, Mount Barker, Alexandrina, Victor Harbor, Yankalilla and Onkaparinga, with funding from the South Australian Government’s Landscape Priorities Fund.

Partnership Projects

All six councils in the region have now been engaged in a co-design process to work through weed and asset priorities that align with both council plans and our Landscape Plan. This has been a valuable process, allowing both parties to improve how we work together. As the work starts to roll out in the next few months, keep an eye out for our partnership signs on selected roadsides and reserves.

Local Eradication Plans

Over the last few months, the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board team have been very focused on the development of eradications plans for the 20 weeds targeted under this project. This has been a great opportunity to bring together knowledge, information and experience into one plan, providing a great management tool for the long term. This process has also been challenging, as the refined focus on specific weed species has revealed new infestations that we were previously unaware off. While the focus on local eradication remains the same, our knowledge of the target species continues to grow and will inform future management actions.

The local eradication target is scaled to reflect the extent for specific species. For example the focus for some species will be on outlier populations, and a great example of this is African Lovegrass. For other species, the focus will be on the only known populations in the region such as for the aquatic weed Sagittaria and Spanish broom.

This is the work the Hills and Fleurieu Board does in the background so that these weeds don’t end up impacting on our highly valued farming enterprises and on our significant biodiversity.

If landholders are aware of isolated patches of these weeds please let us know.

The list of target weeds includes:

• Buffel grass
• Madeira vine
• Mexican Feathergrass
• Chincherinchee
• Sagittaria
• Black Flag
• English broom
• Spiny rush
• White Weeping broom
• Khaki weed
• Broom milkwort
• Two-leaf Cape Tulip
• Tufted Honey-flower
• Parrot Feather
• Castor Oil plant
• Asparagus fern
• Coolatai grass
• Spanish broom
• African Lovegrass
• Chilean Needle Grass

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Christine Jones speaks at a recent Regenerative Agriculture Field Day. Photo - Sophie Bass

An Introduction to Regenerative Agriculture

Are your farm costs increasing every year? Are you concerned about the health of your land and of yourself? Would you like to leave your land in better condition than when you first took it over? Do you think there must be a better way? Perhaps regenerative agriculture is part of the answer?

Take this short survey to help guide the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board to establish a network of people interested in applying regenerative agriculture principles on their properties.


To support the establishment of this network, the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board, in partnership with GWLAP and the Strathalbyn Natural Resource Centre, are presenting “An introduction to Regenerative Agriculture” workshop and networking event, scheduled for 7:00 – 9:00 pm on Wednesday the 24th of November at St Andrew’s Uniting Church Hall, which is located opposite the Church at 10 Alfred Place Strathalbyn SA 5255.

The main aim of the event is to connect like-minded landowners who are new to regenerative agriculture so they can share information, resources and ideas. There will be short “Ted Talk” style presentations by a range of property owners in the region, all of whom are at different points along the road to adopting regenerative agriculture principles on their properties. Plenty of time will be set aside in the program for informal networking. For more information about this event, contact Hills and Fleurieu Regional Landcare Facilitator Jim Mead on 0408 678 890 or at jim.mead@sa.gov.au. To register for this free event, go to:


This project is supported by the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board, through funding from the Australian Government’s Future Drought Fund and the National Landcare Program.

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Soil scientist Dr Rebecca Tonkin measures vegetation cover over soil trial plots on a property near near Birdwood.

Healthy Soils, Healthy Landscapes project - soil plot trials

As part of the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board’s Healthy Soils, Healthy Landscapes Project, Sustainable Agriculture Officer and soil scientist Dr Rebecca Tonkin set up a lime and other amendments trial on a Birdwood landowner’s property to see how the acidic soil responded to a variety of treatments.

Each 3 m x 10 m plot was treated with a different additive, some with lime, some with compost and some with fertiliser. The paddock was sown with a variety of perennial pasture plants to see what effect the additives had on plant growth.

Rebecca returned to the site in mid October to measure the vegetation cover on each soil plot, using a Green Seeker Crop Sensor. Results showed that all liming treatments had better growth and plant vigour than the acidic control. Plots with compost added as well as lime showed slightly better growth.

This is relevant to landowners with acidic soils, as it shows that liming improves pasture growth, and that pasture improvement can be expected from a variety of lime sources.

The soil will be tested in summer to see how far down the liming has had an effect, and which products are the most efficient.

The Healthy Soils, Healthy Landscapes project is funded through the Federal Government's National Landcare Program.

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SA State Landcare Awards – nominations open until Dec 6th 2021

Do you know a local Landcare group, individual Landcarer, school or farmer who’s remarkable Landcare work deserves to be recognised more widely than in their local patch? If so, you may want to nominate them for a State Landcare award. 

Nominations for the SA State Landcare awards have been extended until 6th December 2021. The Landcare Association of South Australia (LASA) encourages nominations from groups, communities and individuals involved in protecting and improving their local environment.
Nominate here: https://landcareaustralia.org.au/landcare-awards-2021/

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Winners of the Spirit of Agriculture Awards announced

The Spirit of Excellence in Agriculture Awards dinner was held on Friday 29th October at The Terrace Function Centre, Evanston.

The Agricultural Bureau was pleased to present the following awards and scholarships for 2021:

The Sustainable Agriculture Scholarship for Farmers sponsored by the Department for Environment and Water (DEW) is an $8000 grant for a farmer (aged 18-40) to pursue further study, take a study tour or run a special project. DEW is committed to supporting communities and industry to make decisions and take action to ensure the sustainable use of our natural resources.

The Rural Youth Bursary sponsored by PIRSA is a $5000 grant for rural young people (aged 18-30) working in a rural community, not necessarily in agriculture, to undertake further study in their chosen career with an ultimate benefit to their community.

The Lois Harris Scholarship sponsored by The Agricultural Bureau of SA is a $2000 scholarship for a first year student studying the Bachelor of Agricultural Sciences at the University of Adelaide. One scholarship is awarded each year, usually to a student entering the course with an excellent Tertiary Entrance Rank (TER).

2021 winners
The 2021 Awards Presentation Dinner was held on Friday 29 October 2021 at The Terrace Function Centre

Sustainable Agricultural Scholarship sponsored by DEW
Winner: Jasmin Piggott

Rural Youth Bursary sponsored by PIRSA
Winner: Emily Buddle

Lois Harris Scholarship
Recipient: Emma Knowles

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One of the cropping demonstration sites at Waitpinga. Photo: J Edwards

Multi species summer fodder cropping demonstration underway

In working towards a resilient Hills and Fleurieu region, the Hills and Fleurieu Sustainable Agriculture team are working with the Fleurieu Farming Systems group on a multi species summer fodder cropping demonstration at 5 farm sites on the Fleurieu Peninsula. Each site includes 12 plant species. It is envisaged that the fodder crop will extend the stock feeding season, increase soil biological activity and make use of any summer rains.

Keep an eye on the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Boards' Facebook page in coming weeks for booking details for the upcoming crop inspection field days scheduled for the 4th and 6th of December 2021.

The Resilient Hills and Fleurieu project is funded by the Federal Government's Future Drought Fund and supported by the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board.

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Darryl Koolmatrie welcomes other elders - Photo: Nicole Motteux

A Guide to Aboriginal Knowledge and Values of the Fleurieu Peninsula Swamps.

The Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board is proud to have recently partnered with Kula-Tind-Jeri Enterprises and Yundi Nature Conservancy to produce "The Guide to Aboriginal Knowledge and Values of the Fleurieu Peninsula Swamps". The Guide provides context to the cultural and ecological importance of the Fleurieu Swamps System. The project was overseen by Mark Koolmatrie and John Fargher. Funding for this exciting collaboration was provided by the Landscape Levy with a welcome boost from a Hills and Fleurieu Grassroots Grant.

The Guide and associated posts are publicly available on the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board website:


They cover a diverse range of knowledge, ranging from historical uses of the system, species profiles (including endemic flora and fauna), cultivation and management techniques and the cultural significance of these species to First Nations People.

This unique guide supports the aspirations of the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Plan and Aboriginal Partnerships Plan, which promote the dispersing of cultural knowledge to inform better land management decision making. This will lead to further opportunities for partnerships with First Nations service providers.

The Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board partnered with the University of Adelaide internship program to develop a report outlining the successes of the Guide, particularly its potential use in future landscape planning involving partnerships with First Nation parties.

The report was kicked off with a Yarluwar-Ruwe assessment at Yundi on September 1st. A Yarluwar-Ruwe assessment sees the cultural significance of a site assessed along with its ecological significance. This method of assessment was developed and endorsed by the Ngarrindjeri Nation. To find out more, click the link below to watch a video of a Yarluwar-Ruwe assessment of the Yundi Swamps.


The University of Adelaide's report highlighted a number of successes including:
• The strong partnership ties between Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board, Kula-Tind-Jeri and Yundi
• A clearly defined research question and a desired output (the Guide)
• The identification of experts from both First Nations and non-First Nations communities saw investment from reputable bodies which resulted in mutual accountability for all involved.

Report conclusions illustrate the high level of landholder interest in establishing First Nation partnerships and incorporating traditional knowledge into land management practices across the Hills and Fleurieu region, providing opportunities for further collaboration and community capacity building.

For more information about the Guide, contact the Hills and Fleurieu Landscape Board's Aboriginal Partnerships Officer Bill Wilson at the Mt Barker Office. bill.wilson@sa.gov.au 

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Submissions for Abstracts for the National Landcare Conference are due on Sunday 27th February 2022

Call for abstracts - 2022 National Landcare Conference

Landcare Australia is pleased to call for the submission of abstracts and posters for the 2022 National Landcare Conference. The bi-annual event will be held from Tuesday 23 to Thursday 25 August 2022, at the International Convention Centre Darling Harbour in Sydney.

The National Landcare Conference is the largest knowledge sharing event for the Landcare community and provides you with an opportunity to share your story with delegates, both online and face-to-face from rural, urban and regional communities in Australia and around the world.

The theme for the 2022 National Landcare Conference is Power of Landcare | Shaping Our Future which affirms the importance of looking to the future when addressing the issues and opportunities open to Landcare. Presenters are asked to explore how their submission ties in with the 2022 theme.

We invite abstracts from individuals, groups, networks and organisations involved in protecting, enhancing or restoring and educating about the natural environment in their local community through sustainable land management and conservation activities.

Landcare Australia is also seeking poster exhibits to display at the conference. The poster are summaries of landcare and natural resource management projects that visually illustrate the project objectives, outcomes and learnings. 

Landcare Australia is seeking abstract submissions for the six concurrent sessions that demonstrate the Landcare ethos for the following six streams:

Landcare Farming and emerging environmental markets - Innovation and technology, soil health, climate change adaptation and mitigation, young farmers, connecting farmers to emerging alternative markets.

Environment and Climate Change - Call to action for all Australians to be on the frontline together with Landcare to reduce the impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss.

Community Partnerships in Action - Building community capacity and resilience, communication and storytelling, volunteering, partnerships, building and sharing knowledge.

Landcare Impact - Demonstrating the multiple beneficial Landcare impacts including biodiversity, community resilience, mental and physical health of individuals and economy.

Urban Landcare - Urban environments bring challenges and opportunities with a growing role for Landcare in urban settings

First Nations Peoples - Providing a platform that recognises the role First Nations Peoples have played in sustainable natural resource management.

For more information and to submit an abstract please go to:


You can access all recordings of the 2021 presentations on the conference website. This content is also available on Landcarer.com.au - the only online platform dedicated purely to landcare, where it will continue to be hosted even after the National Landcare Conference website closes. The Education Resources can be used for training and development, and other capacity building activities in your community. Please share them with your landcare groups, your friends and colleagues.

Landcare Australia encourage you to share this opportunity with your networks and other contacts who would also be interested in submitting an abstract.

Abstracts close on Sunday 27 February 2022. Visit HERE  for full details and to submit an abstract.

Please email any queries you may have to enquiries@landcareaustralia.com.au and we will respond as soon as we can.

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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, Jim Mead, at jim.mead@sa.gov.au.

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

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