One of the barriers we face in habitat restoration is sourcing sufficient quantities of native seed for direct seeding projects. Over the last 5 years the MMLAP has been working to build a healthy supply on native seeds for large-scale revegetation works. Our Mallee Seeds Project (Supporting native seed production for Biodiverse plantings in the SA Murray Mallee) has allowed the MMLAP to establish three seed production areas in the region to produce seed from species including those that are difficult to harvest from in the wild. This method of seed production has multiple benefits including reducing pressure on wild populations, control over quality and quantity of seed produced, and eliminating legislative restraints involved in wild harvest.
The Mallee Seeds project has also allowed the MMLAP to develop skills and knowledge in native seed production and has led to the development of additional projects to produce seed for fine scale habitat restoration for the threatened mallee emu-wren Stipiturus mallee. An additional seed production area has been established to grow plant species that this bird relies on. These plants will be used in revegetation to improve density, diversity and structure via intensive infill planting.
The Mallee Seeds project owes its success to contributions from the Murray Mallee community, especially the landowners who have given their time to help establish and maintain the seed production areas as well as provide the land. More than 200 people have attended workshops and training events throughout this project and many contractors and technical experts have also contributed to the projects success. Although this project has now finished, the MMLAP will work with landholders, community members and technical experts to continue to work that has been carried out and ensure a reliable source of native seed for future Biodiverse projects.
This project is supported through funding from the Australian Government.