> In my
> town, pansies and instant turf decorate a roundabout at the bottom of the
> street, despite the rich diversity of local flora that could be on display.
> In fact, not a single local shrub, groundcover, herb or tree is included in
> the council's plantings, even though many of these are threatened by a
> galloping weed invasion. The town's lake is vegetated with a motley
> collection of exotics (including noxious species) and non-local natives.
I'm pleased to report that "my" council, Mid Murray Council, in South
Australia, is much more enlightened. An extensive program over the past
10 years or so has seen urban streets, parks and gardens planted with
ornamental natives (though mostly not indigenous to this immediate area
- there aren't all that many small, local ornamental species in
cultivation) and "natural" areas in council's control are being
progressively surveyed for their vegetation and, in some cases, enhanced
Council employees are being educated in the need to care for remnant
roadside vegetation while roadworks which unavoidably destroy the veg.
are being revegetated.
Much of the impetus for this has come from SA's state legislation and
Local Action Planning, helped by some Natural Heritage funding but we
are lucky to have a Council Works Manager whose father was a forrester
and who respects and appreciates the natural world.
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