How do you know which plants are good for our bushland and which plants are not? It’s a very good question and one that is currently being answered in the City of Playford.

Covering nearly 350 square kilometres, the City of Playford is one of Adelaide’s largest and most diverse metropolitan council areas. Along with a wide spread of housing developments, there are also large expanses of reserves and bushland which are a feature of this region.

Biodiversity Mapping is the process of identifying those species which are important to the local environment and those which create issues (weeds). Knowing where both important and problem plants are located, management of these sites can be conducted efficiently.

Local-native – or ‘locally indigenous’ – plants that originally grew in the area of the City of Playford prior to settlement are so important to identify.

Playford’s original habitats are strikingly diverse, ranging from the relative heights – and high rainfalls – of Mount Gawler North with its dense Stringybark forests in the east, down through the open woodlands of the One Tree Hill district and across the Mallee scrubs and grasslands of the plains to the coastal samphire flats and mangroves in the west.

However, clearance, agriculture and urbanization has dramatically altered this landscape, with only 3% of the original habitat remaining significantly intact across Playford. This figure declines to less than half of 1% when we consider the plains on its own!

Similarly, there has been a vast influx of exotic species into the area, whether introduced intentionally or otherwise. These have also had a significant disruptive impact.

Therefore knowing what does remain of the original vegetation is of critical value to local biodiversity.

If you’d like any more information on the fantastic City of Playford Biodiversity Mapping project just head to the website.






About The Author

In the Garden is an exciting new local South Australian TV program on Channel 9 this Summer & next Autumn showcasing the best ‘green’ stories this state has to tell. Check out the latest in garden trends, new plants and top tips to keep those gardens blooming.