Clare Valley Green Army comes to a close

News article |

A new generation of young environmental ‘soldiers’ are now ready for their next chapter in environmental conservation, after the third and final Clare Valley Green Army team graduated last Thursday at the Blyth Town Hall.

The Clare Valley Green Army program ended last week, after 18 months of busily planting trees and shrubs across the district, which helped to restore valuable habitat for threatened species in the Mid North.

The program, which commenced in March 2016, has provided an excellent opportunity for 16 young locals to gain practical training and paid work experience exploring careers in conservation management, while seeing real-life outcomes from their work.

Natural Resources Northern and Yorke Community Ranger Denni Russell said the Clare Valley Green Army team had reinstated woodland buffers and linkages between remnant native vegetation through a number of activities.

“Since commencing the project in early 2016, the achievements of the group have been outstanding; the team have planted nearly 30,000 trees and shrubs, installed two kilometres of fencing, undertaken weed control, collected two kilograms of native seed and propagated over 3,500 seedlings,” Ms Russell said.

On behalf of Natural Resources Northern and Yorke, Ms Russell acknowledged a number of people and organisations for their ongoing support for the program.

“Firstly, Ian Roberts and Blyth Nursery for housing and caring for the seedlings, and for providing support for seed collection and propagation activities,” she said.

“We’d also like to thank Rob Perry and the Burra Revegetation Group for providing the Burra community nursery to house an additional 2,000 seedlings for the project.

“Finally, thank you to landholders, for welcoming the Green Army team onto their properties and supporting the program over the past 18 months.”

Nine sites across the Clare and Gilbert Valley’s Council region were revegetated through the program, including private properties, four wineries - Kilikanoon Wines, Treasury Wine Estates, Paulett Wines and Grosset Wines - and 2.3 hectares of public land along the Blyth-Brinkworth corridor.

Green Army Team Leader Tom Fahey from Conservation Volunteers Australia said that he had enjoyed working with the Clare Valley Green Army team and seeing the participants learn new skills and make a real difference to the environment.

“It’s been a great experience leading the Clare Valley team over the past 18 months,” Mr Fahey said.

“Going back and seeing how the trees planted in the first year have grown has been a great feeling for the team.”

The Green Army works with a 20 Million Trees Programme, which is funded by the Australian Government through the Northern and Yorke Natural Resource Management Board and is supported by project partners including Conservation Volunteers Australia, Greening Australia and Upper Wakefield Landcare Group.

As part of the 20 Million Trees Programme, 115 hectares has been revegetated in the Clare Valley between 2016 and 2017 through tube stock planting and direct seeding. As of the end of April, 13.4 million trees had been planted Australia-wide through 166 projects, including the Clare Valley Green Army.

If you would like to learn about, or become involved in future revegetation and restoration projects in the Northern and Yorke region, please contact the Natural Resources Centre in Clare on 8841 3444 or email

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