Exploring Australia’s Native Plants Qld to WA

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Michael Fox

Day 3 20 Aug 2022: Emerald to Kerand 1,361km covered

Our objective today was to visit Crystal Creek State Forest which is in the heart of Glencore’s proposed Valeria coal mine. Sheena Gillman advised that limited independent survey data of flora and fauna is available to support objections to development of yet another coal mine.

Senecio bipinnatisectus daisy

Following the Gregory Hwy we turned west at Gordonstone on what we thought was a gazetted road through the Lee family’s Caroa property to access Crystal Creek SF. However, following the route past the Caroa homestead was confusing so we stopped to ask advice. Derrick Lee advised that the route was not a gazetted road and as the property is registered organic he did not want us to proceed further. Without evidence to support our assumption that the road was public access we turned around. A disappointing and confusing outcome as the property owners don’t want the mine to progress: confirmed by Derrick, so we assumed the owners would be keen to support research into the environment value of the land targeted for destruction. A valuable lesson for us to do better homework before we set out.

Myall Wattle Acacia mevillii

Fortunately we were only about 30 mins from Emerald so we turned back and headed for the Kerand property of Ian Hoch and Paola  Cassoni.

Ann Moran still did a species survey of the roadside so not a total waste. We found a spectacular field of yellow Senecio bipinnatisectus daisy. Ann counts the petals to check that it had less than thirteen petals: native species.

Ann also identified Myall Wattle Acacia mevillii. Attractive like most wattles however it did get smelly in the car as it dried out.

Drummond Range Lookout

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Following the Capricorn Hwy west we stopped at the Drummond Range Lookout, approximately 535 metres, which gives a spectacular view to the east.

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Purple Fleabane Cyanthillium cinerem

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Here we found Purple Fleabane Cyanthillium cinerem with a brilliant purple flower. We have this plant in Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve but never as striking a colour.

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Evolulus alsinoides

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The delicate Evolulus alsinoides was also common in the picnic area.

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Eremophila maculata – Spotted Emu Bush + Belenois java – Caper White butterfly

Longtails Ptilotus polystachyus

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Arriving at Kerand we stopped beside a Spotted Emu Bush Eremophila maculata that was surrounded by dozens of Caper White butterflies Belenois java.

Eremophila maculata grows naturally west of the Great Dividing Range.

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We have some very pretty and impressive native plants like the Longtails Ptilotus polystachyus.

About Mt Gravatt Environment Group

Mt Gravatt Environment Group is restoring a unique piece of Australain native bushland only ten minutes from Brisbane CBD.
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