Close up of two pairs of hands planting seedling in the ground. One pair of hands belongs to a small child and the other pair belong to an older male figure. The child's hands hold a trowel and pat the dirt around the newly planted seedling.


Record numbers at National Tree Day 2023 community planting event

Published: 03 Aug 2023 9:44am

Residents of Wagga Wagga and surrounds picked up their gardening gloves and trowels to help plant seedlings for the community planting event run by Wagga Wagga City Council in celebration of National Tree Day 2023.

There were more than 1000 local native seedlings to plant on Sunday 30 July at Charles Sturt University Farm, and despite the foggy morning, volunteers and Council staff were excited for a day dedicated to nature.

Environmental Officer Samantha Pascall said the event exceeded expectations, with an increased number of volunteers over previous National Tree Day events.

“We have been overwhelmed with the response from the volunteers; we had more than 120 people register for the event, and even more who showed up on the day,” Ms Pascall said.

The planting saw an outstanding 145 volunteers, a combination of various members of the community - kids, adults, returners and first timers - all who chose to give their Sunday morning to helping our local biodiversity.

With so many hands to help, the work was finished earlier than ever before with a record finish time of 11.30am.

There was a complimentary barbeque waiting for the hardworking volunteers provided by Council and cooked by Urban Landcare. Volunteers were also able to take home a free native seedling to plant.

Several volunteer organisations in the area provided participants for this event, including Urban Landcare, South Wagga Wagga Rotary Club’s Rocky Hill Regeneration project volunteers, church groups, Girl Scouts, along with various members of the public.

Wide shot of volunteers at standing around after planting finished. Large blue sign on gate with text:
RECORD TIME: 145 volunteers showed up for the planting, finishing at a record time of 11.30am.

The seedlings planted were specifically chosen to help the threatened Superb Parrot, a native bird species which has been declining in range and abundance for the past century.

“CSU Farm kindly offered the planting site, which is in a Superb Parrot flight path. Species that are planted today were chosen to provide feed and shelter habitat for the threatened parrot,” Ms Pascall said.

“The most significant threats to the Superb Parrot include destruction of breeding and foraging habitat through widespread clearing, land degradation and fragmentation, disturbance around breeding sites and competition for nest hollows.

“Unfortunately, a large amount of our natural areas has been cleared. It is very important to provide a safe passage for our native wildlife to move throughout our LGA to gain access to much needed resources including food, shelter, and water.”

Wide shot of CSU farm planting grounds. Groups and pairs of volunteers are spread out planting seedlings.
HELPING HANDS: the seedlings planted were specifically chosen to help the endangered Superb Parrot. Volunteers were given a free seedling to plant at home.

Council specifically selected species of plants that help enhance the flight path of the Superb Parrot, including White Box and Yellow Box, Deane’s Wattle, Gold Dust Wattle, and Kangaroo Thorn.

The seedlings, once established, will create vital corridor connections for several native species to move throughout the area and to seek food and shelter.

For more environmental events, follow Wagga Wagga City Council’s Environmental Team on Facebook: @SustainableWaggaWagga