Sunday, 26 February 2012

Dates for the Diary

  • Wednesday 29th Feb-9am
    Asparagus Fern Fun at Gurranba reserve
  • Thurs 1st March -9am
    Burnage Reserve beautification by removing weeds and planting natives.
  • Local Landcaring each Thursday Ring Robyn for details 4959 1507
  • Saturday 3rd March 2012, 5-8pm
    at Progress Hall. The Songs of Henry Lawson & Tunes of Waltzing Matilda
  • Monday 5th March, 7pm
    at Progress Hall. Annual General Meeting of the Coal Point Progress Association
  • Meeting soon- Toronto Area Sustainable Neighbourhood-Cycleways & Pedestrian Group Contact
  • Wednesday 7th March 5pm-Toronto library meeting room-
    Toronto Area Sustainable Neighbourhood Coordinators meeting.
  • Wednesday 14th 10-noon  Kilaben Bay Playgroup is hosting a FREE fun filled party to celebrate Playgroup NSW 40th birthday All welcome!
    Where: Kilaben Bay Hire Hall, Jarrett St and Kilaben Bay Rd
  • Wednesday 14th March, 7pm Toronto library meeting room
    Toronto Area Community Garden Group will aim to form a Committee to get a community garden growing.

Happy Birthday Banjo

The first community social for the year…yes there will be more…is all set for Saturday 3rd March 5-8pm at Progress Hall 197 Skye Point Rd.

The event is an audiovisual extravaganza celebrating the works of Henry Lawson and Banjo Paterson.

The presentation by Roger Walters is unique, informative and a real treat to behold.
The timing is early enough for those who like to retire early to still keep their regime but also early enough for the party crew to still get a few good hours of partying in before the night’s end.

The night will be what you make it. If you want to share a meal with your mates, pack a hamper, there’s cutlery and crockery at the Hall. If you’d like to bake for a shared supper, the evening treats are always appreciated with the tea and coffee.

It’s BYO cold beverages.

There will be limited options to arrange seating on the night. If you want to sit with your friends it’s best to book a table before hand so the Hall can be set up.

There will be a lucky door prize too.

Seats are $12 at the door, $10 prebooked. RSVP to Barbara 4959 1259 or Jean 4959 4019.

The AGM is nigh

The Annual General Meeting of the Coal Point Progress Association, Neighbourhood Watch & Landcare Inc is all set for Monday 5th March , 7-8pm at Progress Hall.
All members are welcome to come along. There have been several nominations already received for the Committee so there will be no pressure to put up your hand for a position although new Committee folk are always welcome. It is very healthy for an organization to have fresh ideas, new approaches and new people, please consider joining the Committee.
If you would like to lend your support you may want to renew your membership. You don’t have to attend a meeting just attend to the outstanding membership renewal stuck to the fridge or request a membership application from the Treasurer.

The Progress Association is here to represent the interests of the community and we often get requests to champion various issues. By being a member the CPPA can represent issues that are relevant to members…as they say… united we stand.

As with all AGM’s the mere mention is often enough to find cleaning the lint out of one’s belly button a better use of time, but this year we will be celebrating another progressive year, planning for the year ahead and taking some time to acknowledge the efforts and outcomes of those that have given for the good of all. If you want to know what CPPA gets up to this meeting provides a good snapshot.

The Agenda for the AGM will be

  • Welcome
  • Minutes of Previous AGM
  • Annual Reports
  • Election of Committee

Landcare Update

The Landcare lads and ladies have started the year off with adventures at Burnage, Threlkeld and Carey Bay Wetland Reserves.

Landcaring is an active pastime and if you’d like to get a bit of bending and stretching into your day, then landcaring can provide a good upper and lower body workout whilst doing great things for the local bushland. 

On Wednesday 29th February, Asparagus fern which is becoming problematic at Gurranba will be given a Green Team blitz. If you want to see how the experts deal with this local nuisance pop down for a visit. 

Gurranba is a great reserve, it was the site of the first landcaring project on Coal Point, it has spectacular views of the lake and is the designated leash free area…what more could you ask for?
Ongoing work at the Carey Bay Wetlands has required the ‘cooking’ of weeds onsite by wrapping them in black plastic. Whilst this may look temporarily unattractive it is proving a cost effective management technique.
Threlkeld Reserve has also received some extra attention lately with the ongoing mulching of the track.

Weed of the Month

Asparagus fern is everywhere around Coal Point and Carey Bay, including the wetlands, reserves and people’s yards. This weed is still being sold and cultivated, as it can look very attractive with its bright red berries and ferny leaves.

This prolific seeder is transported far and wide by birds, the red berries are a real treat and with the local abundance it is probably a very valuable local food source for the local wildlife.

Unfortunately this weed is such a hardy survivor that it can out compete most natives, forming a carpet of green, like in the Stansfield Close reserves.

Asparagus fern is easy to remove, for large plants you just need to crown out the top like coring an apple, the watery bulbs on the roots are only water storage and they don’t grow into new plants, the seeds take care of that. The young seedlings, once you get your eye in, are very easy to remove by hand pulling.

The Feedback was Fabulous

The feedback on the various ‘accessways’ presented in the December Chronicle was very informative and much appreciated.

We found out that;
  • the drainage easement at 142 Skye Point Rd had been purchased and was in private ownership…apologies for any distress caused
  • the drainage easement between 263-261 Skye Point Rd has difficult steep, access and alternate routes are available between Skye Pt Rd and Coal Pt Rd
  • we had incorrectly identified a parcel of land 81B-83 Skye Point Rd should have been 83-85 Skye Point Rd…apologies again
  •  ‘Grays Lane’ beside the caravan park is zoned for General Community Use and provides a pedestrian access point to the lake. The adjacent residents have a right of carriageway and have gone to a lot of trouble to make the lane attractive for users.  This laneway has restricted vehicle access for residents and service vehicles only.
There were some public access points that we not mentioned such as 
The Ambrose Street access to Toronto
The Grant Rd access to Coal Point
 Further investigations are underway to clarify what the public are allowed to do on easements, with the main interest being can people walk over them. 
Any more feedback is most welcome. Please realise that we are volunteers trying to investigate options for people who want to walk around our community. Without footpaths we are trying to think creatively about being able to safely enjoy our local environment.

Project Aware on the Coast

Would you like to learn about the local coastal and marine environment? A group of passionate volunteers from Ocean & Coastal Care Initiative (OCCI) are running a four week course with expert tutors, field trips, evening information sessions and a chance to undertake a local community project to share your knowledge. The course starts on Thursday 8th March. To register you interest email  or call Kym Bilham on 4921 0333.

Backyard Habitat for Wildlife

Have you ever wondered how to make the most of your bushland block for the local wildlife?
LMCC has a fantastic program on offer to support and encourage backyard habitat for wildlife
Membership forms can be downloaded  or picked up at Council 126-138 Main Road, Speers Point or Lake Macquarie Landcare Resource Centre, at the corner of Five Islands and Toronto Roads, Teralba

Membership to the program entitles you to 2 free native plants. You can pick them up from the Landcare Resource Centre on the first Monday of the month from 8:30-noon.   Monday 5 March 2012, Monday 2 April 2012

Sustainable Neighbourhood Update

The Toronto Area Sustainable Neighbourhood Group (TASNG) is gathering momentum as the various project groups are getting their plans on paper and working through the Sustainable Neighbourhood process to make local projects a reality.
The recent Toronto Area Community Garden gathering at the Pony Club attracted 25 people, all with an interest in creating a social edible gardening space. The group was multigenerational which bodes well for the future and had a combination of experienced and newby veggie growers, providing pathways to share knowledge. Those present managed to chat and share ideas and knowledge for over two hours. 

There was certainly Community Garden momentum and there will be a follow-up meeting on Wednesday March 14th , 7pm at the Toronto Library meeting room. This meeting will discuss forming a committee to help develop a local community garden. There will be positions to be discussed and filled including Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer and Publicity.

The tap for the tapping the worm juice

At the Toronto Area Community Garden gathering a worm farm demonstration by Michelle was just the inspiration needed to run out grab the first two broccoli boxes available and get worming. A quick search on the internet shows there are lots of easy to follow guides on how to make a wormfarm. Michelle’s demonstration followed this guide. The worm farm was up and running in under 20 minutes, and that included lots of questions.
The best thing about worm farms are you get a great return in the form of turning vegetable scraps into high powered plant food and they don’t take up much space.

Putting the worm farm together
The core ingredients were
  • Two nested broccoli boxes with a ‘tap’ for extracting worm juice and a tight lid.
  • Mesh/flyscreen to stop the worms falling through the pierced upper box
  • The flyscreen to stop the worms falling out
  • Shredded newspaper, old compost, leaves or soil form the bedding for the worms and some worms.