Month: October 2017

Book Launch Hugely Successful

On a balmy Barrabool Hills evening under a cloudless sky, the party to launch the “Flora ot the Hills” book began with a “Welcome to Country” ceremony by members of the Wadawurrung tribe, in front of an audience of 60 plus people at Ross and Lyn George’s little chunk of paradise-“Barraview”.

The research, compilation, editing and publication of the book was masterminded by students and staff of the Gordon TAFE College, under the supervision of Angie Poole. Local guidance was provided by Kaye Rodden, Stephen Murphy and Elissa Ashton-Smith (Geelong Landcare Network).

Concurrent with the production of the book was a photographic competition to find a suitable image for the front cover. Brien Cohn, chief judge of the competition, announced the 3 winners:

  • Best Junior and winner overall: Amber Conron,
  • Best camera shot: Geoff Anson and
  • Best phone shot: Stephen Murphy

Prizes for the competition winners were sponsored by Austeng

Jim Seager (in red) presents gifts of appreciation to Elissa Ashton-Smith, Stephen Murphy and Angie Poole


A selection of the entries can be seen on this website under “Resources/Gallery”.


Mr. Gib Wettenhall, representing the Wettenhall Environment Trust, the project’s major sponsor, officially launched the Book.

Many thanks to our sponsors of the Book – Wettenhall Environment Trust, Bendigo Bank, Surf Coast Shire and the Gordon, plus the sponsors of the evening – Barrabool Hills Brewery and Barwon Ridge Wines.

A pdf file of the book itself can be found on this website. Go to “Publications”, find “Flora of the Hills” and click on “Read Blog detail”. At the bottom of the page click on the green text “flora of the hills”.

A limited first edition of the book was distributed to those members who attended the event. A second edition is expected to be published shortly, and will be available from the Barrabool Hills Landcare Group.



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President off to Japan

BHLG President, Kaye Rodden, has been invited to deliver a paper to an International Landcare Conference in Japan next week.

Titled “Global Resilience Through Self-Reliance – The Landcare Model”, the event has attracted a world-wide audience, with delegates from as far afield as Germany, NZ, Iceland and USA. The conference will be hosted by Nanzan University in Nagoya.

Kaye’s paper is titled “The Meaning of Support – What helps to make a strong, resilient landcare community and how government can help”. The conference runs from 5 to 8 November.

A number of field trips have been arranged before and after the conference, many to look at the recovery and rehabilitation of land around Fukushima.

The accompanying photo catches Kaye busy researching material for her paper. While the Barrabool Hills doesn’t feature in the text, there are a number of local pics in her “power point” presentation.

Bon voyage Kaye.


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Flora of the Hills

“Flora of the Hills” Field Guide project
Introduction by Kaye Rodden

This is the story of history and science, passion and enquiry coming together in an endeavour to determine what the Barrabool Hills landscape looked like before European colonisation in the early 1820’s. Why….so that those in the community wishing to plant native vegetation, could go some way towards “recreating the original landscape”.

It is also the story of partnerships, between the TAFE students and staff of the Gordon, the landcare community and key sponsors such as the Wettenhall Environment Trust, the Surf Coast Shire and the Bendigo Bank.

The result is a beautifully produced field guide for the Flora of the hills, supported by documented reference of over 80 indigenous species, mapped during the field studies by the students, which will be available on the group’s new website. The group are also running a photographic competition to select an image for the cover, with prizes available for the winners of a range of categories, provided by local award winning engineering company Austeng.

Also available on the website will be a chronological summary, supported by historic sketches and photos, of how and why the vegetation has changed over the last nearly 200 years.
To celebrate the publication of the Field Guide, the culmination of nearly 300 hours of course work for the Gordon students, and hundreds more for community members, the field guide will be launched at a “cocktail party and dinner’ in a marquee on the top of the Barrabool Hills overlooking the volcanic plains…. There will also be an exhibition of the winning photographs.
This has been an opportunity not just to learn about how the current Barrabool Hills Landscape came into being but also to establish new partnerships with the youth of Geelong, and hopefully inspire them to value this landscape for the future!

Click here to go to the pdf file:    Flora of the Hills ed2

Ed’s Note: Further data supporting this publication can be found at Stephen Murphy’s web site:

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Equipment for loan to members

400L trailer-mounted spray unit – 4m boom, 50m hand spray line.
2 x Kidney tree seedling buckets with straps
2 x Potti putki tree seedling planters
2 x Georges tree seedling planters
60L motorbike-mountable spray unit, fits most quad bikes
1 x Rabbit burrow smoker

Further info, talk to Trevor 5265 6126

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Equipment for hire

We have various equipment available for use by Members.

They include:
400 L Trailer-mounted spray unit
2 x Kidney tree seedling buckets with shoulder straps
2 x Potti putki tree seedling planters
2 x Georges tree seedling planters
60 L motorbike mountable spray unit
1 x Rabbit burrow smoker

For further info talk to Trevor 5265 6126

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Books of the Barrabool Hills

Books of the Barrabool Hills


The publications listed below were not necessarily written about the Hills, but some reference is made in all of them to the Barrabool Hills and their surrounds:

Barrabool, Land of the Magpie” by Ian Wynd, 1992, published by the Barrabool Shire.

Intimate Landscapes” by Fred Kruger (photograher), 2012, published by National Gallery of Victoria.

Minnie, Memoirs of a Squatters Daughter” , by Mary Emily Susannah (Minnie) Brewer. 2005, published by Lois Dean 2005.

Gnarwarre History and Recipe Book“, by Nola Noble and Flora Weaven circa 1998.

Early Murgheboluc“, by Irene Sarah Venters 1990, published by John Garner Bookcrafts, Geelong.

A Changing Landscape, Celebrating Landcare in the Barrabool Hills“, Booklet by Kaye Rodden 2010, published by Corangamite Catchment Management Authority.

John Muston, Draper, Squatter, Speculator in Colonial Australia“, by Robert Wuchatsch 2017, published by Stony Rises Run Corangamite Catchment Management Authority.

Barro-abil, Our Beautiful Barrabool Stone”, by Jennifer Bantow and Ros Lewis 2017, published by the authours.

We are attempting to compile a list of publications which contribute to building an historical picture of the Barrabool Hills. If anyone has books or photos to add to this list, I would be very pleased to hear from you.

Brent Rodden, e:


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Vic Landcare Award

BHLG President, Kaye Rodden was honoured with a Highly Commended Australian Government Individual Landcarer award at Government House in Melbourne recently.

The award was made made by the Victorian Governor Linda Dessau and the Minister for the Environment, Hon. Lilly D’Ambrosio.

Kaye’s nominator was Christa Jones, who was on hand to witness the award.

Congratulations to Kaye and Christa. It was a good effort for a little old landcare group to compete with a plethora of candidates,  most of whom were paid staff, representing Networks, Focus Groups, Catchment  Management Authorities and the peak body, Landcare Victoria.

Other local awardees were: Bret Ryan (Corangamite CMA) and  Simon Falkiner (SCIPN).

Kaye appears in the photo with Terry Hubbard from Landcare Victoria Inc., who won the top prize – the Joan Kirner Award.

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