Land­care leaves no stony un­turned By JAMIE KRONBORG

Myrtleford Times - - News -

HABI­TAT: Myrtleford Land­care and Sus­tain­abil­ity Group has been awarded $18,585 to main­tain Re­form Hill habi­tat for the stony bush-pea. IM­AGE: Royal Botanic Gar­dens Vic­to­ria

MYRTLEFORD Land­care and Sus­tain­abil­ity Group has been given a $18,585 grant to keep threat­ened flora thriv­ing on Re­form Hill.

The group last week se­cured a Vic­to­rian gov­ern­ment com­mu­nity bio­di­ver­sity grant to shore up the wild habi­tat of stony bush-pea in one of just three places where it is known nat­u­rally to oc­cur.

‘Pul­te­nea lapi­dosa’ is clas­si­fied as vul­ner­a­ble and found en­dem­i­cally only on Mount Tambo near Omeo, Mount Sa­maria near Be­nalla and Re­form Hill above Myrtleford.

The Re­form Hill pop­u­la­tion in­cludes more than 1500 plants on just half a hectare.

The shrub grows to about one me­tre in height and has clus­ters of yel­low pea flow­ers with red cen­tres at the end of stems in late spring and early sum­mer.

Wan­garatta’s Park Lane Nurs­ery has helped to prop­a­gate the species and Myrtleford P-12 Col­lege stu­dents have worked to es­tab­lish more of the pea on the hill.

Up­per Ovens Land­care Group has also been given $31,500 for ri­par­ian con­ser­va­tion and con­nec­tiv­ity work at the con­flu­ence of the Ovens and Buck­land rivers in Pore­punkah.

Vic­to­rian En­vi­ron­ment Min­is­ter Lily D’Am­bro­sio said the bio­di­ver­sity grants helped vol­un­teer and com­mu­nity groups to ex­pand and pro­tect lo­cal habi­tats.

“Sup­port has been made avail­able for ac­tiv­i­ties that help com­mu­ni­ties bet­ter un­der­stand and man­age lo­cal na­tive species and nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ments.”

Ja­clyn Symes (MLC, North­ern Vic­to­ria) said the grants con­trib­uted to­wards the gov­ern­ment’s statewide ‘Bio­di­ver­sity 2037’ plan.

“Many North­ern Vic­to­ria com­mu­ni­ties are al­ready hard at work pro­tect­ing and restor­ing Vic­to­ria’s unique nat­u­ral en­vi­ron­ment and th­ese grants will fur­ther as­sist in the pro­tec­tion and en­hance­ment of lo­cal bio­di­ver­sity,” she said.

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