The Centre operates a non-commercial nursery for revegetation purposes in the Beeliar Regional Park. The nursery is ideally located adjacent to the Centre and currently propagates 5,000 seedlings from seeds covering over 80 different plants. Long-time volunteer, Norm Godfrey, manages the nursery and oversees volunteers and trainees in plant recognition, seed collection, processing and storage, seed sowing and potting-on of seedlings.
The nursery was funded by the City of Cockburn and extended by Thiess Pty Ltd during 2000. Alcoa World Alumina supplied the nursery tables and the team from the APACE Aid nursery provided considerable expertise during the set-up phase.
During 2003 the nursery operations were effected by frequent invasions of the introduced black rat. During the course of a single month 1650 seedlings (or 33%) were lost to rat predation. Volunteers moved the remaining stock to their houses to prevent further losses. The exterior walls were subsequently vermin proofed, and the reticulation automated, thanks to funding provided by the Gordon Reid Foundation of LotteryWest. The vermin proofing was successful for a 4-year period but the rats have started invading where the shadecloth of the roof meets the vermin proof walls. The volunteers recently lost 1,000 seedlings (or 20%) of the 2007 stock over a 2-week period. We are now exploring funding options to completely vermin-proof the roof.