Up2Us Newsletter – October 2013

Mansfield reinvigorated with plants

Rifle Butts Reserve

In brief

Wildflower Walk – 27 October at Delatite Arm of Lake Eildon. See Courier (22/10) for further details.

Batman and Friends – November 15 at Rifle Butts Rd, from 7.00pm

Bring a rug to sit on and come an enjoy a man who is passionate about bats. We will have bat detectors sensing their calls.

Landcare at the Mansfield Show – Come and visit our stall at the show.

Soil Biology session at Benalla – if you are interested please call Kerstie and we can travel together.

A lighthearted morning was enjoyed by families, couples and singles at the Rifle Butts Reserve planting day. “Mansfield resident’s once again demonstrated their resilience by attending the National Tree Planting Day at Rifle Butts Rd Reserve on a cold wintery day” said Kerstie Lee upon reflection of the day.

Along with members and support from the Delatite Landcare Group, a number of members of the Mansfield Mountain Bike Club and general community came along to help plant about 600 understorey plants at this reserve. Parks Victoria workers said that “it was a very friendly morning with everyone talking whilst working.”

Up2Us and Delatite Landcare Group look forward to continuing to assist in the management of this reserve along with Parks Victoria and the Mansfield Mountain Bike Club. Up2Us has currently placed a funding submission to assist with this over the next two years.

Fords Creek Reinvigorated

Local resident Andrew Setchell has a dream of developing Fords Creek upstream of Botanic Park. “I would love to see this creek as somewhere nice to come to, it is a real asset so close to town” says Andrew during the planning stages.

With two local primary schools and a community morning involved in the planting, wood chips donated from High Country Trees and plants donated from the Mansfield Shire, Fords Creek restoration has definitely engaged a community spirit.

One student commented on the Mansfield Primary School day to organiser Kerstie by saying “that it was the best day. I loved the planting, games and activities that we did”.

It is hoped to continue this restoration work over the next couple of years with a grant applied for and the local Scout group interested in assisting.

Local Landcarers at Rilfe Butts Rd Reserve, National Tree Planting Day 2013

Local Landcarers at Rilfe Butts Rd Reserve, National Tree Planting Day 2013

Delatite Landcare Group


Delatite Landcare Group had many people turn up for their AGM to walk around the property of Jeremy and Sally Madin. They have invested much time and energy into managing their property generally in order to maintain high quality vegetation and continue to run a small herd of Hereford polls. They have completed the fencing off of a remnant stand of bush which supports interesting and varied indigenous vegetation. Kate Stothers from the Department of Environment and Primary Industries spoke about the ecological state of surrounding hills and a pleasant BBQ was enjoyed by all overlooking the Mansfield Valley.

The Delatite Landcare Group are currently organising a Wildflower Walk, so please keep tuned for further details and timing of this event. It was enjoyed by all who attended in 2012.

Upper Broken River Landcare Group


The Upper Broken River Landcare Group are keen to complete their AGM, with the focus on developing a strong community membership and demonstrate their commitment with action on the ground. Please keep tuned for the date and time. All members of Upper Broken will be notified within three weeks of the meeting.

You will notice in the coming weeks patches of blackberries turning brown along the Broken River around Gonzaga Reserve as you drive over the new bridge. This is a result of a grant from the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority to engage in stewardship activities along the upper catchments of the Broken River.

Ancona Valley Landcare Group

More electric vehicles are hitting Australia’s roads, and more public charging stations are being installed to support them – but there is no Australian standard for the plug that joins the car to the charging station The Conversation 160913.

Frogs in Bogs & Perfect Paddock Trees

Ancona have been very busy planting many trees and assisting their old paddock trees by fencing and planting. Rabbits and weeds are also on the agenda to be targeted so we look forward to the results this may produce.

Ancona Valley Landcare Group had a severe blow to their best laid plans when the election was announced for the 7th September – the same day as the Paddock Tree talk.

So if you were annoyed that you were not able to make it, then don’t despair – it is currently being rescheduled.

Frogs in Bogs will also be rescheduled so keep tuned.

We would like to Welcome John Rogers back to the President’s role. Thanks to Paula Ingpen as the treasurer. The secretaries role is being shared by all members and we look forward to working with you for another year.

John Rogers
[email protected]

While Australia often thinks of itself having a comparative advantage by being part Asia – Berlin is actually closer to Beijing than Brisbane – Shanghai is closer to Stockholm than Sydney – and Mumbai is closer to Madrid than Melbourne SMH 070913.
Photo taken by Jen O’Brien at Jeremy and Sally Madin’s place at the Delatite AGM

Photo taken by Jen O’Brien at Jeremy and Sally Madin’s place at the Delatite AGM

Garlicky business

Garlic seems to be a mainstay in my garden these days. I am often disgruntled that so much garlic is imported and therefore try to grow as much as I can to dry and store for use during the year. I just about make it most years.

Small garlic bulbs often get missed in my garden so I have it growing in many of my beds which can prove useful in the middle of winter when I am desperate for garlic but the shops only have the Mexican or Chinese imports.

Apart from its desirable uses as a culinary herb, I have heard that they can be a companion plant around the base of fruit trees to repel pests – if anyone has tried this and had positive results please let me know.

Here is a home-made anti-pest and fungal garlic spray derived from Penny Woodward’s Pest-Repellent Plants.

Roughly chop 200g garlic (don’t worry about peeling). Add 6 tablespoons of vegetable oil, cover and soak for 24 hours.

Dissolve 20g of pure soap in 1 litre of water and add to the garlic mixture.

Filter through fine gauze

Store in a non-metallic container in a cool dark place.

This spray will last for several months.

Use at dilution rate of 1 part concentrate to 10 parts water.

If this is too fiddly for you – roast garlic is just delicious (you don’t even have to peel it)


Up2Us is the umbrella organization for Landcare and environmental groups in Mansfield Shire.

This includes the Victorian Farmers Federation, Ancona Landare Group, Delatite Landcare Group, Howqua Valley Landcare Group and Upper Broken River Landcare Group. The facilitator of Up2Us is Kerstie Lee.

Amongst other things, Kerstie facilitates activities for groups, and sources funding. She liaises and works collaboratively with a multiplicity of groups and organizations, including Mansfield Shire, to coordinate sustainable land management.

After a hard morning of cycling and planting, there was sausages all round.

After a hard morning of cycling and planting, there was sausages all round.

If you haven’t already:

  • WEEDS!! – We all have them and probably most of us equally detest them. Up2Us can help you get rid of Blackberries and Gorse this year so give us a call. The other nasties can be pulled or sprayed. If you are having great concerns, give us a call and we can try and help you.
  • Veggie Gardens – It’s a busy time in the garden now – all gardeners know this. If you are new to the game, try potato seeds which produce the yummiest potatoes ever!! Don’t forget to sit and be still enjoying the garden at this time of year.
Jeremy, Andrew and Robin with Abby in the background - planting and riding.

Jeremy, Andrew and Robin with Abby in the background – planting and riding.

The new generation

The new generation

Local Landcare Legends


For those who have been involved in Landcare in Mansfield would know the name Erica Lowing. Erica recently attended and assisted in organising the second annual Legless Lizard survey in early September this year. I walked away from the event mesmerized by Erica’s effervescence and enthusiasm for Landcare in general.

Since 2000 Erica has been formally involved in Landcare. She has held in a variety of office positions within Delatite Landcare Group since then and has also had involvement with the Field Naturalist Group.

“My interest in the environment probably began when I was in my early teens. My mum and dad actively engaged in planting trees on their property about then,” said Erica when reflecting on her interest in the natural environment. She mentioned that she remembers collecting plants which were wrapped in plywood held together with an elastic band, rather than the plastic tubes that we see now.

Erica has dedicated many hectares to indigenous vegetation both through tubestock planting and successful direct seeding with the intent on helping reduce the wind effect and improve wildlife habitat on her own property. She has also assisted neighbours who have implemented revegetation. She now remains active collecting indigenous seed from her own seedbank and other local areas which then gets used in revegetation within the Shire.

Thanks for your investment Erica.

The 2012 Legless Lizard Survey Team, Erica in bottom left with hat on

The 2012 Legless Lizard Survey Team, Erica in bottom left with hat on

A juvenile Legless Lizard found in 2013 by Erica Lowing

A juvenile Legless Lizard found in 2013 by Erica Lowing

Please follow and like us: