13 April 2021
Green thumbs are invited to roll up their sleeves and help plant 4,000 native plants in Bacchus Marsh at the 15th annual Grow West Community Planting Day on Saturday 5th June.
The annual planting day is one of Grow West’s biggest events and is an important opportunity to rejuvenate and restore local landscapes. This highly anticipated community event was sadly cancelled in 2020 but is back this year bigger and better than ever for World Environment Day 2021.
The planting day will be held at Kel Shields Flora Reserve in Bacchus Marsh. The five-hectare reserve forms an important urban biolink, connecting the escarpment with the Werribee River that runs through town, In the future, it will become an important thoroughfare for the community, with walking tracks connecting new suburbs of Bacchus Marsh to the train station and main street.
What’s new in 2021
The Grow West Community Planting Day will run a bit differently to previous years, with volunteers being split into a morning session (9.30am – 12pm) and afternoon session (1.30pm – 4pm). Volunteers can select their preference when registering.
Morning/afternoon tea will be provided at each session, but there will be no lunch provided. Instead, we are asking our volunteers to help support our local food venues by visiting for lunch or dinner before or after you have attended a planting session.
For more information, including a list of local food venues, download the Grow West Planting Day Information Pack. Please take the time to read this before registering.
You will need to select your session (morning or afternoon) when booking. Please only book into one session. Please make sure you register a ticket for every attendee, including children.
Registrations will be open until 31 May or until booked out.
About Kel Shields Reserve
The Kel Shields Reserve was named after Bacchus Marsh community member and former Shire President, the late Kelvin Shields. Kelvin (Kel) was born in Bacchus Marsh in September 1923 and was elected to the Bacchus Marsh Shire Council in 1967, serving until his passing in 1989.
In addition to his role on the Shire Council, Kel was an active member of the Bacchus Marsh Conservation and Planning Association and other local organisations including the Bacchus Marsh and District Historical Society and the Bacchus Marsh Football Club.
Former Bacchus Marsh and District Conservation and Planning Association President, Don Journet, said the planting of the trees currently found at Kel Shields Flora Reserve were a project of the association in the early 1980s.
“They were planted as an example of Australian native species from a wide range of habitats, which explain why the species growing there are not all local species”, he said.
“The association also assisted with local revegetation projects such along Myers’s Road into the Werribee Gorge (after the construction of the Western Freeway), and at Organ Pipes National Park.”
When the association closed in the mid-1980s, it passed its remaining funds onto the Friends of Werribee Gorge and Long Forest, who are long-time partner of Grow West and the planting days.
Grow West is a partnership between Port Phillip &Westernport CMA, Melbourne Water, Moorabool ShireCouncil and Southern Rural Water.
The Grow West Community Planting Day is an annual event is run by Grow West in partnership with Victorian National Parks Association, Friends of Werribee Gorge and Long Forest Mallee, Bacchus Marsh Lions Club, Victorian Mobile Landcare Group.
The 2021 event is funded through the generous supportof SureGro Treemax, Bacchus Marsh Community Bank,15 Trees, G.J. Gardner Homes and Moorabool ShireCouncil.