Blackberry the weed (Rubus fruticosus aggregate) is a serious issue across much of Victoria, and a serious concern for farmers, peri-urban land holders and public land managers.
Blackberry can severely decrease the productive capacity of land, alter water flow, lead to erosion problems and provide harbour for pest animals. In addition it can out-compete and displace native plant species and lead to a loss of biodiversity.
The Victorian Blackberry Taskforce was established in 2001 to work with Victorian communities and government agencies to provide a collaborative effort to control blackberry. Together, the Taskforce’s community partnership program covers over 280,000 hectares of public and private land infested by blackberry.
The King Parrot Catchment Blackberry Action Group was established in 2012 as a community-based approach to blackberry control in the Strath Creek and Flowerdale areas, and was supported by the Murrindindi Shire Council and Goulburn Broken CMA. The BAG was funded for three years by the VBT and successfully engaged a significant number of landholders in the district through the work of Project Officer Rebecca Bowles. The project has been continued and funded by Strath Creek Landcare Group under the name Strath Creek BAG. For landholders interested in finding out more about blackberry control and the availability of chemical subsidies, spray units, etc, Rebecca can be contacted on 0417 700 768.