Volunteers assist Neagles Rock Reserve

Trees for Life Volunteers have spent many hours in Neagles Rock Reserve regenerating native species.

Trees for Life Volunteers have spent many hours in Neagles Rock Reserve regenerating native species.

A group of enthusiastic Clare Valley residents has worked to protect and restore the native vegetation at Neagles Rock Reserve for the past eight years.

The group of 11 volunteers are part of Trees For Life’s Bush For Life program and decided to take on the care of the reserve in 2011.

At that stage the reserve, which is situated on the outskirts of Clare, was being over-run with Topped Lavender and other weeds such as broom, cape tulip and bridal creeper. Topped Lavender is a shrubby, woody weed that has become a major problem threatening native plant diversity in the Clare district.

Neagles Rock Reserve is also home to the largest known population of Euphrasia collina subsp. Osbornii (Osborn’s Eyebright). This nationally endangered species occurs at four other sites near Clare, but the Neagles Rock Reserve population is the most significant with more than 5000 plants being observed in good years.

Since starting at the Clare and Gilbert Valley Council’s reserve in August 2011, the volunteers have worked there almost every Tuesday.

As of November 2018 the reserve is now free of the large infestations of Topped Lavender - meeting a council goal of controlling this weed in the area by June 2018.

The group will continue to do weed control work at Neagles, removing any seedling lavender and other weeds, but the large ‘weed fronts’ they faced eight years ago have been removed – by hand.

Anyone interested in helping out on this site, or any other Bush For Life sites in the district, is more than welcome. Bush For Life also holds a ‘Bush Action Team’ event at the reserve each year.

For more information email bfl@treesforlife.org.au or phone (08) 8406 0500.