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Posted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 8:30 am
by Kilbilli farm
Hi all,

So for those of us with thick stands of eucalypts, more like eucalypt forests, would I be right in saying I need to break up the monoculture they are creating by introducing biodiversity? If this is the case, would this involve thinning because I can't see how I can increase the biodiversity up there with the number of eucalypts I have in these particular parts, I don't know what would be able to survive under them. Any suggestions or comments?

Re: Eucalypts.

Posted: Fri Jun 29, 2012 1:54 pm
by duane
Hi Jess

They are a poisonous toxic weed infestation leaching toxoc poisons down the slope to your farm and water ways below.

Sounds like it might be a difficult job so think about an easier option which could be:

1. create a contour bank below the gum tree line. This will catch a lot of the poisonous leacheate from the gums. If you incorporate some bigger wetlands on the ridgelines which the contour bank runs thru, and fill it with reeds etc these plants will process the toxins into simpler, less harmful compunds. Plus you can plant your biodiversity above and below the new contour that way.

We teach how to do all this in the NSF training courses.

Good luck !!

Re: Eucalypts.

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 7:50 pm
by matto

Yes you will need to do a bit of chainsaw intervention to knock back succession and try and give other plants a chance. Its a really good opportunity for silviculture too, leaving your best trees free to grow on and gain diameter for later harvest and will not doubt create pockets for diversity to take hold.

Eucalypt forests will grow quickly until the canopy closes. At this point competition in the ground for water and nutrients is at its highest. The growing tips are also subject to competition, fine hairs (growing points) getting knocked off by other branches. At this point a forest can stay in the same pattern until a fire or extreme environmental event comes through and creates a swathe for new succession.

Have a look in the library for a vegetation survey,or have a look in an older growth nature reserve. Most understory plants can tolerate shade if there is enough water and nutrients to grow around. Things like forest oak and some acacias? Have a look into private native forestry where you are allowed to create quite large breaks and undertake "enrichment" plantings of native species from your area. Go for the ones that drop the most mulch and then do as Duane says, create contour ditches to spread this fertility.

All the best

Re: Eucalypts.

Posted: Sat Jul 07, 2012 8:45 pm
by Kilbilli farm
Thanks matto, (and Duane)

What u suggest makes total sense and I really appreciate your feedback. :) it's good to have outside ideas, and confirmations when it comes to such a big job, somehow makes it a little less daunting!