Twenty five landholders from Kyeamba Valley Landcare visited Mulloon Creek Natural Farms in early May 2019 for a tour of landscape rehydration works at the Home Farm, with Research Coordinator Luke Peel.
Initially they walked along the ephemeral creek towards Peter’s Pond while hearing about the regenerated system and wetlands and the Natural Sequence Farming Pilot Project. At the pond, they learnt about the leaky weirs, pasture and weed management, regenerating riparian zones with willows and native plants, and how increased flora biodiversity has boosted the farming landscape’s resilience and benefited native fauna. They also learnt about the baseline studies and initial results obtained with regards to fish, frogs, birds, vegetation and riparian health.
Further uphill at the step diffusion system, discussion surrounded the remedial works and processes taking place to regenerate a dysfunctional gully system, where good management has transformed the site after a relatively short period and frogs are already migrating into the reformed habitat.
Key messages covered during the tour included tips on: reading the landscape; managing water better for greater utilisation; spreading water across a larger area; managing plants to protect and regenerate the soil; infiltrating and retaining water for greater vegetation growth; and, filtering water through the landscape for cleaner dams and stock use.
Many great questions were asked in relation to productivity gains, weed management, willows, water quality and quantity, and the effects downstream, as well as pasture and weed management, how NSF contours work, and how fauna can be encouraged to help redistribute organic materials back upslope.
At the barn, a question and answer session recapped the day’s activities and provided scope for further discussion around building resilience to climate extremes, making farms more profitable, working with nature to reduce input costs, boosting farm viability, increasing nutrient availability, the health benefits of nutrient dense food, and working together at the community level to support and mentor one another.
The group then went on to tour Martin Royds’ Jillamatong property near Braidwood.
If your local Landcare group are interested in a tour of the landscape rehydration works at Mulloon Creek, they can be arranged by donation and tailored to suit your needs. Contact us today via: firstname.lastname@example.org.