You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘stormwater management’ tag.

 

Looking from the top of the site

Looking from the top of the site

This morning we went to participate with planting the new rain garden in the Marrickville Golf Course, but were too late.  45 people had come earlier & planted a whopping 1,200 plants.  That’s a fantastic turnout.

Instead we got to wander around this marvelous site.  The rain garden is much larger than I anticipated.  It has two sections.  The first where stormwater comes down into the golf course at the junction of Bruce & Princess Street Marrickville.  Approximately 65% of the Riverside Catchment is impervious surfaces, so a significant amount of stormwater enters the Cooks River from this neighbourhood.

The water first enters a swale, then, moves into a large bowl that has been planted out with grasses with jute netting to stabilize the ground.  From there the water is absorbed into the ground that has a three tiers – sand, then glass sand & at the bottom, rock aggregate.  This slows down the water & cleans it of impurities.  After this process, it is picked up by the stormwater system & taken down to enter into the Cooks River.

Behind the major rain garden is another curved swale.  This swale is to collect overflow of stormwater in a 1 in 100-year flood event.  Between the two sites is a concrete path allowing the community to walk through the area & there is also a very nice wooden bridge.

Council has also planted approximately ten Eucalyptus trees & some Leptospermum.  It is wonderful to see trees added to the golf course.

The rain garden & swale looks fantastic & once the plants have grown it will look even better.  This site will be a good place for schools to visit to learn about stormwater management & the environment.  It will also provide habitat for a range of local wildlife.

Marrickville Council has done a terrific job with the Bruce Street Rain Garden. This rain garden will continue to provide benefit to the environment for many decades to come.  I was very impressed.

The bridge with the rain garden on the right & the swale on the left

The bridge with the rain garden on the right & the swale on the left

New trees have been planted in this area

New trees have been planted in this area

Showing how the rain garden was put together

Showing how the rain garden was put together

 

 

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This ection of Kays Aveue East is to become a green lane.  The resident here has already added plants to the exterior of the fence line & it looks nice.  When completed this area should be transformed into a lovely place, perhaps even like a pocket park for the neighbourhood.

This section of Kays Aveue East is to become a green lane. The resident here has already added plants to the exterior of the fence line & it looks good. When completed this area should be transformed into a lovely place.

Marrickville Council working with the local community will be creating a green ‘living lane’ in a closed section of Kays Avenue East linking to Albermarle Street Dulwich Hill.  The section of lane runs alongside the rail line.  When completed it will be a demonstration site for ‘Connecting MARRICKVILLE.’  

Kays Ave East has flooding issues & falls in the Riverside Crescent Subcatchment Area.  Council intends on building a rain garden & a swale to manage stormwater.  They also intend to create a shared cycle/pedestrian path in the lane during 2014.

From Marrickville Council’s website – “The Connecting MARRICKVILLE program focuses on people & the places they live.  Planning for the natural environment AND infrastructure like streets & lanes takes place concurrently so that Council can:

  • create more attractive & accessible places for people to live.
  • contribute to a healthy environment through best practice water, tree & biodiversity management.
  • coordinate works so there is less disruption to the street & increased efficiency.
  • work with the community so they have input into their local area.

The works will:

  • filter & absorb stormwater through a rain garden.
  • increase the amount of greening for habitat & biodiversity in the area.
  • improve access for pedestrians & cyclists along the railway line & increase links to Dulwich Hill Station.
  • create a greatly improved look & feel for Kays Avenue East.”

I think this is a great initiative by Marrickville Council & will certainly add more beauty to the environment in this location.  Anything that increases biodiversity improves the neighbourhood as far as I am concerned.  One day I hope that Marrickville LGA has many of these green lanes.  A green lane will be good for people, wildlife & the river.

For more information & about opportunities to participate see –  http://yoursaymarrickville.com.au/kays-ave-living-lane 

I will post photos when the works are completed.  

Looking up the slope of Kays Avenue East.  This is a significant area to be greening.

Looking up the slope of Kays Avenue East. This is a significant area to be greening & should significantly improve the neighbourhood.

The red marks the general location of the green lane.

The red marks the location of the green lane.  Although the map says Albermarle Street, this is Kays Avenue East.  Albermarle Street is the street that runs parallel & crosses the rail line.

Albermarle Street

Albermarle Street

 

Sydney Water plans for bank restoration at Cup & Saucer Creek

The restoration will give a home for these Cormorants. They are sitting at the point on the diagram above.

I received some really exciting news about the Cooks River from Mudcrabs.  Sydney Water recently spent over $3-million removing more than 6,000 tonnes of silt from the Cooks River & now intends to naturalise over 1km of the riverbank at three sites.  They have called for tenders & work is planned to start in early 2013.

The three areas of riverbank to be targeted are at Whitten Reserve in Belfield, Flockhart Park to Beamish Street Campsie & the area in front of & adjoining Cup & Saucer Creek Wetland at Canterbury.  All planning diagrams for the three sites show the planting of many new trees.  This is a bonanza for the health of the Cooks River, the wildlife & the community.

From Sydney Water’s website –Riverbank naturalisation can take different forms, but generally involves the removal of some, or all of the steep concrete channel bank & creating a more gently sloping bank. This is stabilised with native plants, trees & rocks. Naturalisation creates a softer landscape feel & can greatly improve the riverbank habitat for native birds & other animals.  Wetlands can also be established as part of the naturalisation process. Wetlands have a significant role in improving the river’s ecology & health by treating stormwater runoff from streets & industrial areas, before it enters the river.”

Last year the Cup & Saucer Creek Wetland won the Highly Commended award at the NSW Stormwater Infrastructure Association Annual Awards for Excellence. Sydney Water deserved to win.  The wetland cost $900,000 & was money well spent.  Cup & Saucer Creek Wetland is a fantastic achievement & is very beautiful.  Lucky are the people whose properties back on to or face the wetland.  I’d love to be waking up to the sound of the birds in the morning.

From being a lawn with a couple of trees, it is now an important habitat area filled with waterbirds & other life, including turtles.  On top of this, the wetland cleans the stormwater coming down the Cup & Saucer Creek channel before it enters the Cooks River.  The community will benefit from the new works too, as we have already benefited from the environment of the Cup & Saucer Creek Wetland.

The habitat around Cup & Saucer Creek Wetland from the pedestrian bridge at the Sugar Factory to Mary McKillop Park will be extended & the lawn removed.  This is a good length in an area filled with waterbirds.  There will be new viewing platforms, new seating (great because there isn’t much), saltmarsh plants & gravel paths, plus many new trees.  The area from Burwood Road to Beamish Street will also have new trees, saltmarsh plants, a viewing platform & a gravel footpath.  Similar additions are planned for the area at Whiddens Reserve.

Slowly this beautiful river will be repaired from the terrible damage inflicted upon it over the last century.  The restoration works by Sydney Water will be a better legacy to bestow on future generations & I am quite excited about it.

You can download the plans here – http://bit.ly/RriIM7

For more information see Sydney Water’s website – http://bit.ly/SmzOgl

Sydney Water plans for the area from Flockhart Park to Beamish Street

Sydney Water plans for Whidden Reserve

 

A flock of Fairy Martins are busy building mud nests under the Illawarra Road bridge in Marrickville.

1. Tree collector Enzo Enea has opened his Tree Musuem in Rapperswil-Jona Switzerland to the public.  The museum has a collection of 2,000 different species of trees gathered over the past 17-years & is in the grounds of a 14th Century monastery set on 2.5-acres.  Brilliant idea. I bet it will be very popular.  http://bit.ly/lr4MBJ

2.  So simple, I wondered why it wasn’t the norm already.  Designer Danor Shtruzman has come up with a way to water street trees & verge gardens by directing any water that hits the footpath to the plants.   Grooves set in the footpath direct water to drains, which then take the water to the roots of plants or trees. Nice. http://bit.ly/OrSbLt

3. The city of Copenhagen in Denmark has unveiled plans to create the first climate-adapted neighbourhood & I love it.  20% of the street area (around 50,000 sq mts) will be reclaimed for trees & plants. Stormwater will be directed to planted areas reliving the sewerage systems of a great amount of water when it rains.  Bicycle paths will also act as storm water channels. There will be water towers, green roofs, urban gardens & green houses. “….the project will instead operate with the city’s visible surface & make the city greener, so that water is both delayed & the urban spaces are simultaneously transformed into wondrous places for the city’s residents to hang out or exercise.”  http://bit.ly/PZFn2b

4.  A campaign has been launched to raise $4 million dollars plus to replace the forest that was burnt in the Lost Pines State Park & surrounding areas in Texas. 95% of the forest was lost to the fire. The plan is to plant 4-million trees. “Foresters say it will be at least 30 years before the loblolly pine seedlings grow to resemble a forest.”  Quite a sad statement really when you think how easily our forests are cleared for woodchip.  http://sacb.ee/Ov80od

5.  Sadly, about 301 million rural trees have died in Texas as a result of the 2011 drought.  Estimates are that a further 5.6 million trees will die in urban areas of Texas also as a result of the 2011 drought.  http://usat.ly/OSstp0t.

6.  A 1.3-acre urban farm called Eighth Day Farm in Holland Town Center Michigan has been created in the middle of a shopping mall car park. The community can learn about farming, where food comes from & help in the farm as well as buy produce grown without chemicals or pesticides.  This is a great idea & will help cut down the Urban Heat Island Effect as well.  http://bit.ly/MIlKYt

7.  Two tree species considered extinct on two occasions have been rediscovered in, highly threatened fragments of dry forest in coastal Tanzania. One of the trees, Erythrina schliebenii, belongs to the genus of ‘coral trees,’ which have spectacular red flowers & viciously spiny trunks. The other tree, Karomia gigas, was only known from a single specimen cut down a few years after it was first discovered in coastal Kenya in 1977.”      http://bit.ly/RaVUON

8.  In an excellent move by the 2012 IUCN World Conservation Congress, a ‘Red List’ has been adopted by for whole ecosystems, instead of just for threatened species.  Dr Emily Nicholson of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Environmental Decisions & University of Melbourne’s School of Botany said of the change, “We’re hoping that by establishing sensible global rules for assessing the status and resilience of whole ecosystems we can better protect both them & the individual species they contain.”  http://bit.ly/TztaVq

There are a number of pretty verge gardens along Newtington Road Stanmore.

Project WOW – WALKING ON WATER – a collaboration between Marrickville West Primary School, Marrickville Council & the local community in the Riverside Crescent sub-catchment area.  Learn about the relationship between how we live, the water cycle, the greater environment & the Cooks River.  It should be an inspiring & fun event.  Everyone welcome. 🙂

Showing the basin from the top with part of the swale in the foreground

On a steaming hot day last October we went to see the recently completed Johnston Street Bioretention Basin at Earlwood & go for a walk around Illoura Reserve.

The bioretention basin was much larger & more interesting than I expected.  The bush at this location was also a surprise being quite different than other areas of Wolli Creek that I have walked.   The trees were gorgeous. Towering Red Gums & Turpentine trees lead into the bush & the dreaded Privet was blooming so the air smelt nice.

We went back again today just to see how much the plants in the basin had grown after all this rain we had.  It was as expected, lush & green. What wasn’t expected was all the work done by the volunteers of the Wolli Creek Preservation Society.  Signs say they are regenerating the bush around the basin. They had opened up a pathway that allowed us to walk right around the basin & up to the Red Gums.   It is so nice being in bushland. That it is so close to Marrickville LGA makes us very lucky in my opinion.

Red Gum - there are many great trees in this location

I had not heard of swales & bioretention basins until after starting SoT, so here is a brief rundown of what they do & some stats about this particular basin.  A bioretention basin is constructed to manage & clean stormwater before it enters creeks or rivers.  Stormwater enters our waterways at a terrific pace. This can erode the bank in places, but also erode the bottom of the watercourse.  Stormwater also delivers an enormous amount of pollution to our waterways – nitrogen, phosphorus, heavy metals & fine sediments.  All these have a detrimental effect the water quality of our rivers & creeks.

A bioretention basin is really a scooped out landscaped area of land that can be big or small.  They generally contain 3 layers: course sand or pea gravel at the bottom, another layer of sand in the middle & sandy loam at the top.

The idea is that stormwater from our streets is directed to the bioretention basin where it literally percolates through these levels.  This not only slows the stormwater, but it also cleans it of oils & other substances that comes off our roads.  The cleaned water is either allowed to seep naturally into the ground to make its way to the river, or channeled via a pipe or pipes at the lowest layer as it is in this case.

Finally the surface of the basin is planted with native grasses & small shrubs. The plants need to be able to tolerate water as well as periods where the basin is dry.  Swales work on the same principle, but rather than a shape of a basin they look similar to a rocky creek bed.  The Johnston Street Bioretention Basin also includes a long wide swale running downhill beside the basin.  There is a large pipe that directs water from the basin to the bottom of the swale.

The Johnston Street Bioretention Basin, built by Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority, is expected to remove approximately 2,353 kg of sediment & 13kg of nitrogen annually before it enters Wolli Creek, which flows into the Cooks River & on to Botany Bay.   Their sign says that the system is designed to remove 100% of gross pollutants, 79% total suspended solids, 57% total phosphorus & 30% total nitrogen.  It’s beautiful & a terrific boon for the environment.  It’s also well worth a visit.

I made a short video of the Johnston Street Bioretention Basin & Illoura Reserve here – http://bit.ly/uPLiQX

Showing the swale & the path to Illoura Reserve which is just around the bend.

Raingardens slow water down, spread it out & then soak it into the ground.  Hard surfaces speed up rainwater, concentrate it into a smaller area & take it to drains & then to wherever the drains go. In our case, it is mostly the Cooks River.

“A rain garden is a beautiful landscape feature you can put in your yard at home to collect rainwater runoff from your rooftop, your downspouts, driveway, any hard surface. And the plants & soil in the rain garden will filter out any pollutants found in that runoff & slow it & divert it before it goes in the storm drains.”  They can be big or small.

Because of recent research by researchers at the University of NSW, we now know for sure what everyone suspected; that the Cooks River is a hotbed of pollutants.  Interesting that fishing is increasing along the river when it would be dubious any fish caught is safe to eat.  Unfortunately, most of the pollutants (oil, metals, pharmaceuticals, pesticides & other contaminants) come from stormwater that flows directly into the river.  Stormwater even as far away as Newtown is in the Cooks River catchment area.

Marrickville Council designed & are in the process of implementing quite detailed stormwater management across the municipality to reduce pollutants entering the Cooks River.  Some accessible examples are the swales in Steel Park & at Thornlie Street Marrickville South & raingardens in Wallace & Hill Streets, also in Marrickville South.

I have just learnt of a community driven effort in Seattle to curb pollution from stormwater runoff into Puget Sound.   Residents plan to build 12,000 rain gardens over the next 5-years to prevent approximately 160 million gallons of stormwater pollutants entering Puget Sound each year.  It is estimated that 40,000 metric tons of oil & grease enter Puget Sound every year & that 75% of all the toxins found in the Sound comes from stormwater runoff.  Therefore, 12,000 raingardens should have a significant & positive impact on the water quality of Puget Sound & this benefits everyone, including the environment.

I think it would be quite easy to set up a similar program in Marrickville LGA, as well as the other Council areas that surround the Cooks River.   If we started in our neighbourhood first, perhaps the other communities would be inspired & do the same.  I think most people care about the health of the river. The great thing about raingardens is that once you build them, they essentially look after themselves.

Raingardens can also help street trees by diverting stormwater into the ground rather than down the drain.

This news item video explains succinctly how raingardens work, their benefits & of the resident campaign in Seattle. “There are many misconceptions about rain gardens. People wonder if they’ll cause flooding or if they’ll become mosquito breeding grounds, or if they’ll be fussy to maintain. But according to the rain garden experts, these are all myths. Probably the biggest myth is that you can’t use these systems or bioretention areas, rain gardens, on poor soils, soils that don’t drain well. And, actually, you know, we’ve applied & installed, you know, designed and installed bioretention systems on poor soils. And they work pretty well. Very well, actually.”http://htl.li/7UjE3

The following are short videos of swales & raingardens built in Marrickville South. They are all quite different from each other & all enhance the landscape. They probably look even nicer as the plants would have grown more since these videos were taken.

Raingargen: Thornley Street Swale Marrickville South– http://bit.ly/uhFMYa Raingarden: Hill Street Marrickville South – http://bit.ly/vWlgsX                 Raingarden: Wallace Street Marrickville South – http://bit.ly/u9NNKy      Raingardens, Swales & a Saltwater Wetland – Steele Park Marrickville South http://bit.ly/trc9yS

This is one type of raingarden. It is at the bottom of Hill Street Marrickville South & was built by Marrickville Council. Raingardens can be made to look like an ordinary garden with flowers & small shrubs & be of any size.

I saw this clever idea in Marrickville recently. These milk crates prevent the under-road pipe from becoming blocked with rubbish & leaf litter. This photo is of both sides of the same street.

New verge gardens along Mansion Street Marrickville South - a massive improvement to the streetscape

Marrickville Council has recently replaced the concrete footpath & created verge gardens along Mansion Street Marrickville South. I think they look terrific & greatly improve the streetscape. The street trees now have an opportunity to collect sufficient water when it rains & the gardens themselves should reduce stormwater runoff.  There are no problems for pedestrians as there are wide pathways from the roadside to the footpath placed at regular intervals.

Considering that Marrickville Council spends in excess of $2-million every year just on mowing grass verges, I think verge gardens like this would be a far better use of our rates.  Imagine what $2-million could do each year if it were put into planting street trees & landscaping our streets & parks.  It wouldn’t take too long to significantly green up our landscape.

Research has shown that the greener the environment is, the happier & healthier people tend to be.  Verge gardens are also beneficial for the environment.  They help collect stormwater & pollution from passing traffic & if planted with wildlife-friendly plants, could also provide a food source for our urban wildlife.

Red Flowering gums along a series of verge gardens in Dulwich Hill

We know a good-looking street tree increases the property value of those near it, so it’s only logical that verge gardens & a better-looking streetscape would also improve property values.  Green really does equal money when it comes to real estate, especially in high-density areas like the Inner West.

Of course there are streets in Marrickville LGA that do not have room for verge gardens or where they would be impractical, but many could have them.  If verge gardens are put into the right places, they should not impede pedestrians or people leaving vehicles.  The size of the verge gardens I have seen across Marrickville LGA mean that people pushing prams or shopping trolleys can do so without difficulty.

On the newish verge gardens in Livingstone Road Marrickville, Council has put a concrete path from the kerb to footpath opposite the front gate of all the houses facilitating unobstructed movement from car to house.  This has been repeated in all the other verge gardens I have seen.  Where multiple verge gardens have been created along a street, there is a pedestrian pathway to the footpath every few metres big enough for a wheelchair, pram or trolley.  Council also don’t put plants on the kerb-side of the garden so that people don’t have to exit the passenger-side of the car into shrubbery that could cut their legs or cause them to fall.

My experience of Marrickville Council is that they are highly vigilant when it comes to safety so I can’t imagine them putting in a verge garden where it would cause people problems.

If Council were not spending all their time mowing grass verges, they could be managing the verge gardens instead.  Apparently, once they are grown, verge gardens look after themselves & only need a bit of occasional weeding.  There is always room for other plants so if property owners wanted to add other plants, they could. They just need to be safe plants for passing pedestrians, children & dogs – so no cacti or other plants that could cause injury, nothing that could cause difficulty for passengers leaving cars & no high-growing plants that could reduce visibility for drivers.

I know this is a contentious issue in the community.  I’ve heard arguments against verge gardens that residents should not have to look after the verges, therefore grass verges must continue.  My personal opinion is that verge gardens have much in the way of benefit & there is no reason why Council cannot continue to look after these areas.   Some people say they like grass verges & I appreciate that.  I don’t dislike grass, but I much prefer plants & flowers.

The reality is the climate is changing & as a society, we must make changes that will help lower the urban heat island effect or we will be condemning ourselves to be living in an oven.  Grass verges are less effective at cooling through evaporation than plants & trees. A dried out grass verge can take on the qualities of hard surfaces, not absorbing rainwater well.  Grass requires a lot of water & maintenance to keep looking good & does nothing to help with biodiversity.

These verge gardens at the Arlington Oval intersection in Dulwich Hill are stunning

View of Sydney from Sydney Park. Note the masses of trees & some Grevillea flowers

About 3 kms from Sydney’s CBD is a glorious emerald jewel called Sydney Park.  If you live in the Inner West & own a dog you probably go there often because it is leash-free & offers an incredible amount of room for dogs to run themselves into happy exhaustion.  There are even water bowls for dogs to have a pit-stop drink. I knew of Sydney Park’s existence, though I had no idea just how wonderful this park is. My impression over the years was garnered by what I

What I thought Sydney Park was about

could see as I drove along Sydney Park Road in St Peters – a lot of trees near the road, the old brickworks buildings & an enormous grass hill that I didn’t feel like climbing.  Then I read an article in the Inner West Courier in 2009 about the killing of a black swan by a dog.  Black swan……in Sydney?  This enormously sad news item & the subsequent letters from the community was the prompt I needed to finally visit.

That first visit in 2010 is something I will not forget. We stood at the bottom of the park at the Harber Street entrance & surveyed an enormous park with multiple lakes, masses of normal-shaped large trees, patches of woodland & birds everywhere.  We were hooked. How had this wonderful place been unknown to us for so many years?  If you haven’t been, you must go at least once.  I doubt it will be your last visit.

Reflection in the lower lake

Okay there are hills, but most are easily walked. Many people run up them. Wide bitumen footpaths meander through the park. If a hill seems too much for today you can easily head in another direction.  The bulk of the park is wheelchair accessible though better if you have someone who can help you up those hills if needed.  Prams are a cinch.  There is an ‘all-abilities’ playground, accessible toilets & a kiosk, though I haven’t seen these yet.

The 44-hectares of Sydney Park is less than 20-years-old & was built on a former clay extraction & waste disposal site.  It is a prime example of how industrial & landfill land can be turned into something beautiful.  It was created by the City of Sydney Council who continue to manage it.  They not only have created something that is beautiful & entirely useful for the current population, but everything they are doing is creating something for our children’s children & beyond.  I don’t know how many Fig trees the City of Sydney Council have planted, but I’d guess at least 200 trees.  I’ll have to find out.  The Figs are planted reasonably close to each other to create a continuous canopy when grown & to provide shade. They are all young, but in 2-3 decades time, these Fig trees are going to provide phenomenal beauty.  Just imagine how lovely this park will look in 100-years time.

Sydney Park has tree precincts.  There is the Palm area, the Grevillea woodland, the Tea tree & Callistemon woodland, the Eucalypt woodland, the Casuarinas woodland, the Acacia woodland & so on.  We have not seen all the park as yet so there is bound to be more woodland areas. Trees within the park are used to great effect to screen neighbouring factories  & surrounding roads.  There is no philosophy of maintaining sightlines into this park.  Sydney Park is an oasis & provides refuge from busy city living.  As much as possible, the noise of busy Princes Highway & surrounding main roads has been kept out, both visually & audibly.

Wattle blooming on an island in one of the lakes

Not only is it a place of beauty, but Sydney Park also functions as a stormwater collection & filtration site.  Stormwater from surrounding suburbs comes to a large holding pool where it is filtered & sent on to the first of 5 fairly large lakes. From there it is filtered into the next lake & so on, until it finally filters through the ground into the watertable. The lakes provide 5-star habitat for a wide range of water birds, including migrating birds & Spoonbills.

There are birds everywhere in Sydney Park & they are both wary & curious of people which means you can have a good look at them, but not touch. City of Sydney Council has almost completed fencing the lakes to prevent another dog attack.  Wooden poles attached to the cyclone fencing have made the fences look beautiful & a part of the landscape as well as being functional. This is just one example of how artistic, but functional design has been used in Sydney Park. Nothing here is ordinary in my opinion.  Everything has been done with beauty in mind & to provide food & habitat to urban wildlife.

There are a number of swales that take stormwater from the park itself into the lakes.  We last visited while it was raining & it was easy to see the design that had been implemented to capture runoff down the hills.  Much had been directed into woodland & garden areas & the remainder channeled to meet up with bio-swales that took the water to the lakes. To prevent soil erosion, great long snakes of coir encased in rope were laid around garden beds or in front of vulnerable trees. Some of the pathways are permeable.

Kite flying is easy in Sydney Park

While there are areas of lawn for informal ball games, City of Sydney Council have not created yet another park that is essentially paths & lawn surrounded by trees around the periphery & a few along pathways.  They have recognized that people want & need shade & desire areas to sit where they can be in the shade.  There is not a Crepe myrtle to be seen. They have planted a range of bird-attracting trees & shrubs making this park useful to urban wildlife & there are many areas where it is difficult for people to enter allowing wildlife to have safe habitat.

Much of what has been done in Sydney Park could also be done along the Cooks River.  If it were, it’s likely that a greater range of water birds would live along the river.  Poles have even been sunk upright into one of the lakes to allow birds to perch as well as making an artistic statement for humans. Trees have side branches offering other places to perch. Few plants are ornamental only. While there are grasses around the lakes, grasses are not the main feature of any planting.  Even groundcover is of the type that produces food for small birds. There is loads of colour from flowering trees & shrubs & this will change seasonally.  The ground is healthy as there were a range of gorgeous mushrooms & toadstools growing after the rain.

I am in love with Sydney Park.  It would have been expensive for City of Sydney Council to create, but this is money well spent & the park is going to only get better as it matures.

There are other features, such as a memorial woodland, that I will post about later.  Sydney Park is a prototype of a people-friendly, dog-friendly, wildlife-friendly green space that is not ordinary in any sense & that will only improve as the decades pass.  City of Sydney Council have probably won awards for Sydney Park. If they haven’t as yet, then they should. They deserve it.

I have posted a short YouTube video – Birds at Sydney Park Wetlands & will upload more videos of various aspects of this park later – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JsHvuGPBjk4

Poles for birds & art in the newest lake. The new fencing can be seen on the right

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