07 May 2011

Disused Quarry becomes a classy housing estate

Bedfordale, Western Australia

A disused gravel quarry looking over the southern corridor of Perth has become a classy housing estate in a matter of a few years.

Lateral thinking by the developers (Nick Pagano), project and town planners Dykstra Planning and Plantation and Landcare has transformed this disused quarry into housing estate.

Figure1: 18 months after planting and one of the direst summers and winters on record in WA

As part of the condition there had to be a landscape and revegetation plan submitted to the City of Armadale. The lot size were fairly small and therefore we need to strategically locate the revegetation so:

1. There wasn't too much encroachment on the actually lots.

2. Introduced native vegetation that linked some of the remanent vegetation.

3. Provide screening, shade and shelter.

Boundary screening both along the road frontage and through the centre of the development where the lots adjoined. In long term this will create a vegetation corridor through the estate.

Figure 2: The quarry just after the completion of the ripping and re contouring

The whole quarry needed to be re contoured as well as deep ripped with a D10. Deep ripping will ensure the vegetation can penetrate the sub soils and become stronger and ultimately better established native trees and shrubs.

Site preparation is the key to successful revegetation.

The vegetation zones was also extensively ripped to help with the initial establishment phase, mulch was applied across the whole site to assit with the establishment phase. Ripping ensure the trees and shrubs establish without the need for on going watering throughout the summer months.

The planting zones were sprayed before the hand planting of some 13,000 native trees and shrubs in the winter of 2009. Fertiliser was applied at the time of planting.

Good site preparation, weed control and specie selection ensured that we gained a very good strike rate across the site. Considering the drought WA has experienced since the trees were planted all parties are pleased with the progress to date.

As well as revegetation throughout the lots and boundaries street trees (C calophylla) were planted along the road verges to provide long term aesthetics.

Selling real estate agents have commented that the prospective buyers were all keen to look after the vegetation on their new lots to help with the aesthetics of the whole estate. Nearly all the 40 lots have been sold, construction of high standrad homes is underway.

With lateral thinking and a practical approach even the most challenging sites can be converted to a high class asset.

More information:

Plantation and Landcare Services

PO BOX 591