What is biodiversity?
The diversity of native plants, animals, and microorganisms in our backyard and beyond play an important role. They keep our air and water clean, and is crucial to the survival of all earth species including humans. Biodiversity is the basis for healthy and functioning ecosystems, and is an important part of our community. The Holroyd Local Government Area (LGA) is dominated by Wianamatta Group sediments, rock and soil layers, on the flat to undulating Cumberland Plain. Over 200 years ago, the distribution of the Cumberland Plain Woodlands covered approximately 122,00 hectares. Today, there is only 8% of the original trees present. Due to the expansion of urban development, the Cumberland Plain Woodland remnants in Holroyd are typically small and isolated pockets threatened by weed invasion, mowing and further clearing.
What can I do to help?
In our backyards, we can all do something to improve the biodiversity of Holroyd.
Here are some examples:
- Plant local native species
- Install a small pond to provide water and habitat for frogs
- Install a nest box especially designed for native birds and possums
- Provide rocks for shelter, shade and sun bathing opportunities for small animals
- Use a native turf species
- Adopt good garden practices such as worm farming or composting, mulching our gardens, and installing a rainwater tank and drink irrigation system
Growing local native plants helps to link green corridors for local wildlife such as birds, frogs and lizards, and local plants are better suited to the climate.
How does compost and worm farming work?
By using compost, and worm castings on your garden, you will improve the quality of your soil and encourage a healthy space for plants.
Any organic matter such as food scraps, newspapers, fallen leaves, pruning and grass clippings can be composted.
Red or tiger worms are most commonly used for farms and they are wonderful garbage guzzlers because they can eat half their body weight in food scraps a day.
The material produced from composting and worm farming is a great way to reduce your household waste and produces a great organic product to improve soil in your garden without having to use chemicals.
How does mulching promote biodiversity?
In bushland areas, the soil is covered with leaf litter and in your garden, you can recreate the healthy growing conditions of nature by covering your soil surface with mulch.
Mulching helps maintain even soil temperature, reduces water loss through evaporation, slows weed growth and provides a slow-release nutrient source.
You should try to keep the mulch away from the tree trunk to avoid collar rot.
How do I become more actively involved?
If you don’t have a backyard or you want to do more to help improve the biodiversity of Holroyd, you can speak to Council about becoming a bushcare volunteer.
It is a great way to care for our environment and give something back to the Holroyd community. You can help make a real difference as well as meet new people and have some fun.
For more information on how to get involved with biodiversity in Holroyd, please call Council on 9840 9840 to speak to our Environmental Health Unit.