Biking to Maldon this Sunday

The count down is on…find a bike, dust it off, check your tyres and chain, and meet us at the Muckleford train station this Sunday 3rd April at 11am.

We will ride to Maldon, and partake in hot chips on the grounds of the Maldon Visitor Information Centre, before slowly riding back to Muckleford! (We are no longer going to the pub as we had to pre-book and pre-order and pre-pay for our meals which was all too hard.)

Bring a friend, bring a picnic, bring a drink bottle and see you PROMPTLY at 11am. If you’re late, you’ll have to catch up with us! Please RSVP to Beth.

Connecting this Country course

A practical one day a week (Tuesdays) course that enables participants to develop more meaningful connection to the Victorian Central Goldfields on Dja Dja Wurrung Country. Participants will learn indigenous world views and nature connection, along with applied skills in land management, ecological restoration, plant weed and animal identification, regenerative living, carbon reduction, resilience and food systems. Presented in collaboration by five local organisations including: Castlemaine Commons, Connecting Country, Nalderun Education Aboriginal Corporation, Castlemaine Institute and the Maldon Neighbourhood Centre.

The 8 weeks will cover a mix of visits to country, information, introductions and skills including:
· Introduction day at Leanganook
· Landcare – Connecting Country 
· Climate and Resilience Friends of the Earth & Castlemaine Institute
· Reading local landscapes: the layers of geology, ecology and landuse – Castlemaine Institute
· Living Simply
· Local food systems
· Tour with Aboriginal Elder, Nalderun Aboriginal Education Organisation
· Bush walk overnight – morning bird chorus and closing

Tuesdays – Term 2 Starting 3rd May for 8 weeks
$750 Full / $550 Concession / $350 Subsistence.

Information sessions – 26th April:
Maldon 2pm
Castlemaine 6pm

For registration contact Maldon Neighbourhood Centre, and 5475 2093 and
Enrolment form here:
For more information contact Castlemaine Commons, Natalie Moxham and 0448 372 466 

Bassett Creek Stage 3

Another planting completed, and our final piece of work on the Bassett Creek. Thanks to the Spragg family for letting us have access to the creek front where we put in 500 plants to help connect up habitat, and strengthen the vegetation all along the creek line. Thanks also to Beth, Eleanor, Dave, Nioka, Andrew and Shirley for working in the rain (how lovely for us!), it took us under 2 hours.

We thank The Good Op Shop for supporting this project.

Welcome to new members Andrew and Shirley who came out to help us guard the plants today

Bassett Creek Stage 3

We have one more planting project to complete this season. Just like our habitat corridor project, we were severely delayed in planting due to the hold up with the bamboo stakes coming from China last year. But as the plants have already been grown for us, and we now have the stakes, we are going to go ahead.

The creek line has been slashed and ripped and is ready to plant. Our expert planters will be doing this, and Landcare members can come out to guard. I’m very sorry that this isn’t a weekend activity, but we are running out of time!

The planting/guarding will be done Tuesday 15th March 2022, starting at 9am. The property is on Rilens Road, please email me for the address.

Landholder has slashed the site, ready to rip

Let’s ride!

Can you believe it, the Muckleford Landcare bike ride is back! And we’re early (can’t wait until November). Following two years of cancellations, we are going ahead with the ride in April.

SUNDAY 3RD APRIL 2022, 11am, meet at the Muckleford train station. We will ride to Maldon for lunch, and return home via the Castlemaine-Maldon bike trail. I will make a booking at the Kangaroo Hotel for lunch, so please RSVP me with numbers. Ride with your family, bring a friend, or come by yourself and meet some Landcare people.

Please call Beth Mellick on 0431219980 or email me.

Climate-proofing planting in Muckleford

For over 20 years Muckleford Catchment Landcare Group have been designing plantings with climate change patterns in mind, and encouraging local landowners to consider the advantages of planting a wide range of species and provenances from many bio regions of Eastern Australia. 

Within the community there have been government-funded plantings, including riparian restoration and habitat corridors, as well as some tens of thousands of rehabilitation plantings by members of the Muckleford Landcare group.

Elli Wellings and David Mallard purchased their 100-acre property in Walmer a few years ago, which was once used to graze sheep. They immediately did two things – reached out to the local community, and joined their local Landcare group.

As a first step, Elli and Dave made an effort to seek out expert advice about landscape function and plant selection in order to better understand the land they had in front of them, and what they could do to improve it. 

It was not viable to have stock, and the couple’s long term vision was for the land to be restored. “We could see how the stock has impacted on the existing vegetation” said David. Ellie’s father is a bush regenerator in NSW so she understands how worthwhile it is to bring back native animals to a degraded landscape.

Over the past 12 months Dave and Elli have transformed their property, with the help of landscape restoration practitioner and Muckleford Catchment Landcare Group Vice President, David Griffiths. Together, they put in 6,500 plants on 10 acres as part of a farm forestry enterprise. Then came revegetation of an old paddock with a further 2,500 native plants to create a wildlife corridor between two dams. This corridor contains 20 species from wide-spaced trees to middle/understory plants, with a dynamic species provenance selection.

David and Ellie have spent nearly $50,000 to restore their new property and plant their forest. They are a glowing example of the type of tree-changers that add value to our Landcare movement.

Ellie and David

Muckleford Habitat Corridor – Look what we did!

Thank you to everyone who turned up yesterday to help out with the habitat corridor on the Driscoll property. We had a great crew of young people, new members, new landholders in the area joining us for the first time, some visitors from Maldon, and some Muckleford Landcare members whose faces we hadn’t seen for a while due to Covid.

Thanks to the Driscoll family for coming out in force to join the Landcare group in guarding the plants, and with the dinner. It was lovely to work with such engaged landholders.

Our trusty contractors worked all day Saturday and half the day Sunday to put in 3,000 plants. Contractors, Dave and Nioka then stayed on to help with the guarding of the plants on Sunday afternoon. Now it’s up to the Driscolls to make sure those plants get a drink while we’re waiting on the rain!

This project was funded by DELWP Community Volunteer Action Grants for on-ground biodiversity.

Muckleford Landcare Habitat Corridor

The contractors are out there today planting our habitat corridor. Join us tomorrow (Sunday 6th February) starting at 3pm to guard the plants. All the guards have been made so tomorrow we just have to get them onto the plants. All drinks and food will be supplied including a gourmet vegetarian feast for dinner. Please bring gloves and ‘sock savers’.

We will be on the Muckleford-School Road, down towards the Maldon-Castlemaine Road end. Please ring Beth on 0431219980 if you have any questions.

Plants for the habitat corridor
Ripped lines in the corridor being planted out