The Anglesea Community Precinct is a hive of activity as the new ANGAIR propagation unit takes shape and is expected to be ready for use in the early New Year.
The new unit will help grow plant species that are indigenous to the Surf Coast and the Anglesea Heathlands area, focusing on plants that are difficult to grow commercially.
ANGAIR President Peter Forster said the propagation unit provides an interesting opportunity for members to participate in plant identification, seed collection, seed storage and propagation activities.
“This is an ideal activity for older people and an excellent opportunity for younger people to learn plant skills and propagation of local native plant species,” he said. “ANGAIR volunteers have an impressive knowledge base that can be tapped.”
Other ANGAIR activities include weeding and nature walks and require more physical exertion.
“The idea of the propagation centre is to help preserve floral species that are truly local to our area which are often difficult to grow commercially,” Mr Forster said.
Plants from the unit have been used on revegetation projects at several local schools and are made available to members to keep indigenous plants in the local landscape especially urban gardens.
ANGAIR also makes their plants available to the public at the Easter River Bank Market in autumn, the annual Wildflower Show in spring and open days.
The propagation group has provided valuable educational opportunities for students from the Gordon Institute of TAFE and the Green Army crew, as well as training for the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee conservation staff.
Great Ocean Road Coast Conservation Supervisor Georgie Beale said the propagation centre provided valuable resources for the community and helps fill the gap for indigenous plants.
“The ANGAIR propagation centre helps maintain the unique biodiversity along the coast and provides local knowledge and support to the community and land managers,” she said.
The new centre has been architecturally designed by Nick Walter and will be built by a local Anglesea builder “Creations in Parallel” to accommodate the group’s propagation work.
For over eleven years ANGAIR propagation group has worked on Bill and Jenny McKellar’s property, “Grasstrees”, however since the McKellar’s have moved ANGAIR needed to find a new home.
The propagation unit is to be located near the ANGAIR Office and Library in the Community Precinct, behind the Memorial Hall, Anglesea.
ANGAIR holds regular working bees and many other environmental events in the Anglesea and Aireys Inlet region. Visit the ANGAIR website for all the details and to view their extensive activity calendar.