Home - Save Our Waterways Now


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Fish Survey Training/Teaching Workshop 12 Mar 2016
Saturday 12 March 2016 8.00 am - 1.00 pm Brisbane City Council's Creek Catchment Officer Program is sponsoring a second Fish Survey/Teaching... 

Cold Room

New Cold Room Arrives 19 Dec 2015
Our New Cold Room has arrived and we are happy. Thanks to a BCC Suburban Initiative Grant obtained through The Gap Ward with the help of Cr Steve... 

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How much fun can you have on a Saturday morning? 18 Sep 2015
We need you to help staff the SOWN Plant Nursery on a Saturday morning. It's only for two hours every couple of months and it's a seriously great... 

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The future of Walton Bridge Reserve 18 Sep 2015
A straw poll of the locals who use Walton Bridge Reserve indicates they love the park as it is now and don't see the need for any change. Cr... 

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Art meets creeks 27 May 2015
Two intrepid Brisbane artists travelled 7500 km through Queensland on a mission to connect with nature - both physically, and via digital... 

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Biomedical Research at SOWN
Scientists from the Eskitis Institute for Drug Discovery (Griffith University) and the Australian Prostate Cancer Research Centre - Queensland... 

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SOWN wins Healthy Waterways Minister's Grand Prize 23 Jun 2014
The 2014 Healthy Waterways Awards have recognised SOWN's ongoing project working with Arthur Gorrie Correctional Centre propagating native plants and... 

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Report on the 2013 SOWN annual general meeting 11 Dec 2013
Community Liaison Officer: Sarah-Jane Abbott Auditor: AE Girle, Irwin and Associates 

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Where are our worst woody weeds? 10 Jul 2013
There are plenty of weed trees out there but we need your help to find them. SOWN is bidding for a Brisbane City Council Community Conservation... 

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Weeds To Woodcraft
The inaugural SOWN Timber Expo 'Weeds to Woodcaft' was held on Sunday 9 June at Yoorala Street Parklands. After a night of rain, the drizzle stopped... 

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Get your copy of The Creek in Our Backyard
The new revised and expanded edition of The Creek in Our Backyard: a practical guide for habitat restoration by Robert Whyte was launched on 9... 


Looking for the elusive Platypus 13 Mar 2013
Wildlife Queensland is again conducting PlatypusWatch, a program aimed at monitoring and managing platypus populations within South East... 

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Report on Special General Meeting 6 Mar 2013
More than 30 SOWN members attended the Special General Meeting on Wednesday 6 March 2013 to discuss the future of SOWN. Committee members Anne... 

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SOWN Gift Vouchers 22 Nov 2012
Support our local environment by donating to the SOWN Environment Fund. We can make your gift-giving easy. For a donation of $100 SOWN will... 

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Looking for the elusive Platypus 14 Nov 2012
Wildlife Queensland is conducting Platypus Watch, a program aimed at monitoring and managing platypus populations within south east Queensland, and... 

Healthy Waterways

Survey on recreational use of waterways 14 Nov 2012
Healthy Waterways is conducting a survey to gain a better understanding of how the South-East Queensland community use, value and perceive their... 


Calling All Woodworkers, Turners and Crafters!
Recently SOWN received $10,000 from the Energex Sustainability Fund to explore the sustainable use of weed tree timber (SUWTT) for hobby and... 

ithaca Intact

Ithaca Creek State School goes down the creek
In September 2012, SOWN volunteers Robert Dunne and Craig Davis helped a group of children from Ithaca Creek State School Years 1 and 2 to explore... 

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Dawn Street Corporate Working Bee 21 Sep 2012
After successful clean-up and planting events at Dawn Street on Clean Up Australia Day and National Tree Day in July, corporate volunteers from Turner & Townsend carried on the site rehabilitation in a working bee at the Ithaca creek site on Friday 21 September 2012. Although extreme heat and... 

BRAIN Brisbane Rainforest Action and Information Network

Glenella bush food garden established
A bush food garden has been established at Glenella Parklands following a community event on 1 September 2012. Brisbane Rainforest Action and... 

Koala at Ferny Hills

Recent wildlife sightings
A koala Phascolarctos cinereus was spotted recently in the backyard of a house in Bellata Street The Gap. Bellata Street adjoins Mount... 

Owen Harding on watering duty at the National Tree Day planting.

Premier pitches in at planting
Queensland Premier Campbell Newman joined more than 100 volunteers to plant native trees on the banks of Ithaca Creek for National Tree Day on Sunday... 

Community Champion

SOWN shortlisted for NRMA People's Choice Award
SOWN has been chosen as a finalist in the NRMA People's Choice Award. To win the Award, we need your vote. Voting for the People's Choice... 

Cat's Claw

Watermelon anyone?
No, this is not watermelon. It is a cat's claw tuber painted with herbicide containing red enviro-dye. Isn't it pretty! While working in St... 


Seed to collect in July
Syzygium smithii Creek Lilly Pilly Alectryon tomentosus Hairy Birds Eye Aphananthe philippinensis Rough-leaved Elm Pavetta australiensis Pavetta Polyscias elegans Pencil cedar, Celerywood 

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More Nursery news 4 Jun 2012
Acmena smithii Lilly Pilly Brachychiton acerifolius Illawarra Flame Tree Callerya Megasperma Native Wisteria Cryptocarya microneura Murrogun Pavetta australiensis Pavetta Polyscias elegans Pencil cedar, Celerywood 

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Nursery Stocktake 11 December 2012
What wonderful rain we have had. This is a great time to plant. Thanks to Lyn and our nursery vols we have an up-to-date list of 15,156 plants for... 


Nursery Stocktake 31 March 2012
Thanks to Lyn and our nursery vols we have an up-to-date list of 13,354 plants for your bushcare sites. Plants are listed by stock and... 

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Volunteers transform Dawn Street Park
Dawn Street Park in Bardon was transformed on Clean Up Australia Day by 135 keen volunteers who planted 1257 native plants, pulled masses of rubbish... 

Cliff Bell

Clif Bell - 21 August 1925 - 6 November 2011
SOWN members were saddened to learn of the passing of Life Member Clif Bell. We have received this lovely card from Wendy Bell which is... 


What's fruiting in December?
Strictly speaking, seed collecting is really 'fruit collecting'. Our plants produce fruits in various forms - pods, capsules, gumnuts and berries,... 

Dianella fruit

Latest seed wishlist - December 2011 4 Dec 2011
This is a different way of asking for seed for the nursery. The species listed below are those for which the Nursery believes it has adequate... 

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SOWN celebrates end of 2011 3 Dec 2011
SOWN's annual general meeting was an opportunity to get together, look back on the achievements of 2011 and make plans for 2012. The meeting... 

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True friends, false enemies
There are a lot of plants, many of them extremely important, that are in danger of being pulled as weeds because they don't have the classic "native... 


Lantana Substitutes
Lantana can provide temporary habitat for small birds, mammals and reptiles. This is true, but somewhat over-rated, as the comparison is usually... 

My favourite plant begins with "A"
I'm sure there are a lot more plants beginning with A than with X or Z. Those poor cousin letters down at the bottom of the alphabet hardly get a mention. Lets look at the Zeds in Enoggera... 

Weeds of Australia

New Weed Key available from Biosecurity Queensland
Many of us already know the excellent weeds DVD - Suburban and Environmental Weeds of South-East Queensland, by Sheldon Navie, an identification and... 

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Removal of Wild Taro (Colocasia esculenta)
Wild Taro is a fast-growing aquatic weed with dark reddish purple stalks and very large, arrowhead-shaped, dark-green, velvety leaves. The leaves are... 

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Great photos from SOWN Nursery Open Day 2011
SOWN Nursery held an Open Day on the morning of Wednesday 5 October. Visitors and volunteers flocked to see the nursery in operation and learn... 


Three reasons why drought is your friend!
First of all, the drought kills weeds. Those soft, fleshy, water-hungry weeds soon wither and die when it gets really dry. On the other hand, you see... 

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Habitat Brisbane weed tree removal policy
This is what is permitted on Habitat Brisbane sites: 

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A Bit About Beetles In Brisbane
These notes were the text of a talk given by Dr Geoff Monteith to SOWN in 2006, covering many of the interesting recent discoveries in Brisbane... 

madeira vine tuber

Thought Mail
from robertwhyteus to richardharding317H99 DATE: 26 October 3003 TIME: 4.34pm EGT (Eastern Galactic Time) 

Raspberry Jam
Rubis Probus (Native Raspberry) is a local species we are experimenting with in our attempts to regenerate small bird habitat. It can be quite... 

Collect-a-cap milk bottle top

Collect-a-cap to raise money for SOWN
Save Our Waterways Now is participating in the Pauls Collect-a-Cap charity fundraising campaign. For every Pauls Milk Bottle Cap you collect from... 

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Enoggera Creek desilting and mangrove management
Brisbane City Council is planning to undertake desilting and mangrove management works in Enoggera Creek between Bowen Bridge Road and Edmund Street,... 

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Drought Tolerant Enoggera Species
The SOWN web site has gone to great personal and professional lengths to produce, at the request of the SOWN management committee and countless... 

Seed collecting

Seed collecting - new targeted approach
SOWN Nursery is starting a new targeted approach to propagation so we have the most important species in stock for members to plant. That means we... 

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Planting guides and tips
These resources should help you when choosing the best locally native plants for your bushcare site or garden. You can also visit the "Plants To... 

Rob Whyte sampling biodiversity

Are natural areas REALLY more biodiverse?
An interesting question. The reason I was asking myself this was because I had observed that when I sampled good natural areas with lots of native... 


Robert Whyte keeps Ithaca Intact
With the exit of our Ithaca Intact coordinator Glenn Withers, Robert Whyte has stepped into the position and is keen to get amongst it. Rob has... 


Seed collecting
SOWN and Ithaca Intact have permission to collect seed from native vegetation in bushland and natural area reserves managed by Brisbane City Council... 

Green thumb

How to plant tubestock 30 Apr 2011
Several times a year, SOWN invites members of the community to join us planting native species along the creek. To help those who are new to... 

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AECOM donates great gear to SOWN
SOWN recently received a significant donation of bushcare gear from AECOM, an environmental service provider. Director of SOWN Robert Whyte... 

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Eden Seeding the Community Garden
The Yoorala Street Community Garden has received a donation of 'older' seeds from organic seed distributor Eden Seeds. Michelle Peile from the... 


Sneaky Weeds
Keep an eye out for these sneaky weeds around your local patch. Several of these species have have already infiltrated Enoggera and Ithaca Creeks in... 

Bob Whiteman planting

People power creates rainforest parkland
SOWN, BRAIN and the local community planted more than 1500 rainforest trees, shrubs and grasses in Glenella Parklands, The Gap on 26... 

ithaca Intact

The creek in our backyard - sold out!
SOWN has launched a new book The creek in our backyard: A practical guide for landholders by SOWN Director, Robert Whyte. Funded by the... 

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Something to BRAG about
Bush Regeneration at Arthur Gorrie or BRAG is a new partnership that's providing SOWN with plants for our bushcare sites. In 2009 Brisbane City... 

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SOWN really cleans up Woolcock Park
SOWN's Clean Up Australia Day event at Woolcock Park, Red Hill was a great success. Organised by the Ithaca Intact Coordinator, Glenn Withers and... 

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Taming The Turkey ( the "lets get along" method)
I have had a high degree of success in keeping turkeys out of my garden beds by turning a portion of my yard into a turkey playground, i.e. a carpet... 

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Save the Cassowaries of Mission Beach
Rainforest Rescue needs your help to save the Cassowaries of Mission Beach in Far North Queensland. Their rainforest home has been devastated by... 

Tingid Bug

Cat's Claw Control
Cat's Claw Creeper (Macfadyena unguis-cati) is an exotic weed vine that threatens Brisbane's waterways and bushland areas. In a bid to target a... 

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Just in time for Christmas!
Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) local and international volunteers braved the rain and humidity to give a much needed helping hand to local... 

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Vera's bird list 1981-83
Ibis Pied Currawong Magpie Pied Butcherbird Pee-wee Crow Spangled Drongo Koel (male, black, red eye) Koel (female, black head, other markings... 

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How to make the most of the dew
I found before I put my first tank in that we would get up to 60 L a night as condensation from the iron roof. When I put the tank in, this would... 

SOWN Nursery

Nursery news - Christmas 2010 13 Dec 2010
SOWN Nursery is bursting with plants longing to get into the ground. So get along on Wednesdays and Saturdays between 9am and 11am, or by appointment... 

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Live and let dye?
Concerns were recently raised at the Advanced Herbicide Training Workshop about the health hazards of spray marker dye. This is the dye that is used... 

Rob Whyte

New herbicide regime 7 Dec 2010
As SOWN members we need to get our heads around the new herbicide arrangements. Basically, Habitat Brisbane herbicide will NOT be available at... 

Cover of the Water Smart Strategy

Final WaterSmart Strategy now available 26 Nov 2010
Water is central to our identity as Brisbane, the river city, and is vital for our health, industry and to support the liveability of Brisbane. 

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SOWN Environment Centre redevelopment
SOWN has applied to redevelop the property at 98 Yoorala Street. You can download the plans to have a look.  


Beware the tick
In April 2010, SOWN's Director Robert Whyte spent five days in hospital with a very nasty illness caused by a tick bite. The little-known scrub or... 

Plant Guard

SOWN Plant Guard Water Saver
The SOWN Plant Guard Water Saver has been designed to protect young plants from wind, weeds and herbicide over-spray. 

Peter Garrett

Peter Garrett planting a great success
More than 50 SOWN members, campaign workers and media representatives descended on Lochinvar Lane, The Gap, on Ekka Wednesday, to plant a tree with... 


Online renewals going gangbusters
Our breakthrough with the "subscription" facility at PayPal has proved a bit hit, with members being able to renew membership with just a click. 

Opopaea sown, a tiny goblin spider

Spider named in honour of SOWN 8 Jul 2010
A small goblin spider has been named in honour of Save Our Waterways Now. SOWN Secretary Anne Jones, who is also an ambassador for Queensland... 


Desperate cry for Wednesday Nursery volunteers! 16 Jun 2010
Remember when the Wednesday Nursery crew was like this? When there were so many people there was a queue round the shed to wash dirty tubes?  

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Renew your SOWN membership now
SOWN membership renewals for 2010-2011 are now due. For the first time SOWN members can pay their membership fees online with PayPal. It's as... 

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SOWN pays tribute to Vera Moffett
More than 50 SOWN members and supporters went back to Yoorala Street on Saturday 17 April to pay tribute to Vera Moffett who died in January. With... 

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Here are the latest numbers from our nursery to inspire your planting plans. Remember, all plants are free to members and there is no "maximum"... 

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Cleaning up The Gap
With help from The Gap High School and the Ergon Energy Green Team, a group of SOWN volunteers cleaned up a large section of the bike path behind... 

Butterflies and friends in the Enoggera Creek Catchment - by Frank Jordan
Brisbane Forest Park catchments have a long history of naturalist excursions since settlement. On July 16th 1887 the Field Naturalists section of... 

ergon energy donation 2009

Ergon Energy powers up SOWN
Ergon Energy have recently shown their green credentials with not one but two donations to SOWN! Staff at the Banyo depot held a fundraising BBQ... 

Image © Sue Sweeney Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License.

The Dreaded Annual Rag Weed
Click the image below for information on the dreaded Annual Rag Weed.  

EPA Publications
A gathering of a small number of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) publications that might be of interest to SOWN members. 

International conservation volunteers

Staying safe on your bushcare site
From basic self defence strategies to learning about the myths relating to violence…Brisbane City Council's second round of free personal safety... 


A one in a hundred year flood, twice in 6 months
After the November 21 2008 flood, almost exactly 6 months to the day, the Enoggera catchment has again been devastated by flood. Most of the damage... 


Fear not, till Birnam wood come to Dunsinane
Scene IV Country near Birnam wood. What wood is this before us? The wood of Birnam. Let every soldier hew him down a bough And bear't... 

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Washing Tubes - Tips and Tricks
If you were inspired by our newsletter to pick up a few boxes of dirty tubes and wash them at home we salute you – any extra hands on pot washing is... 

Austracantha minax

Eye spi(der) with my little lens...
Is it science or art? The amazing world of the miniature attracts many photographers and SOWN members are right up there, capturing new views of... 

A clean pot is a good pot
The SOWN nursery runs on a tight budget and we reduce, reuse and recycle wherever we can. So we are always happy for you to return any empty plant... 


BRAIN website on the move
The Brisbane Rainforest Action and Information Network (BRAIN) website has a new address. You can now find out about BRAIN and all things... 

Nursery Truck

Calling all ex-SOWN wire plant trays!
The wet summer has seen SOWN members planting a huge number of native species throughout the Enoggera Creek catchment. In fact so many have gone out... 

Orange Fingered Yabbie

Aquaculture Breakthrough - local bushcare group raises yabbie from adulthood
In a first for aquaculture an Orange Fingered Yabbie has been succesfully raised from adulthood in a Brisbane suburban creek. "This is the holy... 

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After the flood — emerging weeds
The post-deluvian days in the Enoggera Catchment are quickly becoming a nightmare.  

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Ithaca Creek State School
Ithaca Creek State School has been vital to the integration of Ithaca Creek into school curriculum. Ithaca Creek State School is located less than... 

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Rainfall 1991-2008 at the MOFFETT gauge, recorded at 77 Yoorala Street, The Gap
Rainfall figures recorded at the MOFFETT gauge, 77 Yoorala Street, The Gap. We have had the wettest year since 1999.  

Tawny Frogmouth

Tawny Frogmouth orphans
Rainfall figures recorded at the MOFFETT gauge, 77 Yoorala Street, The Gap. We have had the wettest year since 1999.  

SOWN Annual General Meeting 2008

2008 AGM and Christmas Party
The Annual General Meeting and Christmas Party was a convivial affair with many awards and certificates including the presentation of Life... 

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Brisbane Catchments Network Christmas Party Cleanup
Members of the Brisbane Catchments Network (BCN) came out west to the Enoggera Catchment for their Christmas Party and to lend a helping hand in the... 

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Ordering SOWN work shirts
If you want to order new work shirts with the SOWN logo, you can now place individual orders through WorkWear. Located at 63 Annerley Road,... 

Ithaca Creek State School
Ithaca Creek State School has been vital to the integration of Ithaca Creek into school curriculum. Ithaca Creek State School is located less than... 

broken tree

Clean up warnings
SOWN members have been warned to be careful if considering cleaning up bushcare sites. It is really important to ensure safety especially in The... 

Fig tree

Giant Fig, discovered by bushcare in the '90s, shredded by storm
The damage from storms in and around Yoorala St, The Gap, was severe. One of the worst hit streets, Weemala, featured on the news visited by the... 

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Ithaca Creek also battered
Craig Davis reports: Ithaca Creek and the Lugg Street bushcare site took a beating in the early hours of 20 November 2008. The creek at its peak... 

storms and floods smash Enoggera Catchment Nov 08

Storms and floods devastate Enoggera, Ithaca and Fish Creeks
The destructive storm that hit The Gap on Sunday 16 November has undone years of work rehabilitating Enoggera and Fish Creeks in The Gap. All... 

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Planning day a great success
SOWN members turned out in force to contribute to planning the future of the group, and the SOWNy club, in particular. Held on Saturday 11... 

Rocks in a creek

Activities in a watercourse
Regardless of the ownership, the Department of Natural Resources and Water requires prior approval before any 'activities' can be undertaken within... 

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Ithaca Intact on Great South East 5 Oct 2008
Channel 7's Great South East will be featured Save Our Waterways Now and the Ithaca Intact project. The Great South East hosted a 'green special'... 

Richmond Birdwing butterfly

Free Richmond Birdwing butterfly workshop - 16 August 2008
The Richmond Birdwing Butterfly (Ornithoptera richmondia) is very rare in Brisbane due to loss of its natural habitats. Find out what you can do to... 

Section of artwork featuring a kookaburra

Art exhibition to fund Ithaca Intact
All SOWN members and their friends have been invited to attend the opening of "Plight of the Urban Stream. 2008" at 6.30pm on Tuesday 17... 

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'Learning from Success' forum - 14th June
When it comes to Landcare and Environment Groups, South East Queensland has arguably some of the most successful in Australia. If you ever wanted to... 

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Sown Birthday - 1 March 2008
There is nothing special happening to celebrate SOWN's 14th birthday on 1 March 2008. Just sing yourself Happy Birthday as you tend your creek, and... 

Fred Vera

Vera and Fred Moffett Library
At our first meeting of 2008 the SOWN management committee unanimously approved the suggestion put by Director Brian Hallinan that we recognise the... 

Catching Cat's Claw Creeper
It's that time of year again, when a number of bushland areas, creek lines and suburban fences around Brisbane suddenly turn bright yellow. No it's... 


GOSSIP volunteers needed
If any member can spare some time on a regular basis to help with delivery of potting mix and collection of pricked out plants done by retirement... 

Nursery Truck

Saturday Morning Nursery Roster - volunteers needed
The SOWN nursery is open to members for collecting plants every Saturday 9am-11am. If we have a lot of volunteers on the roster, each member's...