The Native Plant nursery at Eurong was an initiative of FIDO’s, John Sinclair, in collaboration with QPWS. John saw the need for the residents to replace their introduced plants with locally sourced and grown Fraser Island plants.
This idea aligns with the island being a World Heritage area, maintaining the natural integrity, the three Butchulla laws and the Nature Conservation (Protected Areas Management) Regulation 2017 – 134
On my first short visit in October 2015, I collected and sowed 14 different plant species. Now, after 19 visits, I have collected and sowed both seeds and cuttings of 70 different species.
Running the nursery from afar is challenging. We have weeds come into the pots which try to overtake the seedlings. There have been issues with the power turning off, which stops the automatic watering system working. This has led to plant losses, including newly sprouted seedling trays and established plants.
The good side is I have met a lot of the locals who have taken the nursery to heart and are planting with the local species, and I have had great success propagating some difficult to grow species.
The Eurong resort staff are replacing introduced with local species. Plants have made their way to Happy Valley, and the residents of the residential valley of Eurong often ask what new species are available. QPWS has utilised the plants, replanting Pandanus that have died due to Jamella australiae. FIDO has been planting in many areas of Eurong.
Contributed by Suzanne Wilson, FIDO