What Is Bush Regeneration?
The term bush regeneration was pioneered in the late 1960’s by Joan and Eileen Bradley who developed what is known as the Bradley Method of Bush Regeneration. On daily walks through their local bushland reserves in Clifton Gardens and Chowder Bay they noticed that introduced weeds were out-competing native species and gradually spreading from more disturbed areas into areas of more intact bushland. They observed the results of the clearing of monocultures of Lantana by council outdoor staff where without maintenance cleared areas quickly reverted to their original condition.
They concluded that a more systematic approach to the threat of weed invasion was a more appropriate restoration strategy and recommended initially removing weeds in areas of high native plant diversity (or resilience), working progressively towards more disturbed areas.
The Bradley Method is based on the following three principles:
- Commence work in areas of high resilience progressively working towards more degraded areas.
- Utilise weed control techniques that cause minimal disturbance to the soil profile.
- Avoid over clearing of woody weeds and let the rate of primary weed control be dictated by the rate of regeneration of native species.
In order to ensure that resilience is reinforced a successful ecological restoration strategy should be compliant with these principles.