Translocation of the Sticky Eremophila: Eremophila resinosa

Volunteer Master GardenersInitially five clones of this rare species were grown by tissue culture and planted on site at Westonia in 2004. With seed collected from the mine site, a further planting of seedlings in 2005 substantially increased plant numbers on the enlarged site. All plants were watered for the first few years. The reticulation system was removed in 2008.

The plants are growing well, survival rates are high (74% for the tissue cultured plants and 93% for the seedlings) and most plants have produced flowers and contributed large amounts of seed to the soil seed bank. By November 2010 three new seedling recruits had been found on site.

The project was initially funded by Westonia Mines Ltd then Catalpa Resources, now Evolution mining.

Two more translocation sites were established and planted in 2009 with plants raised from seed, and planting continued into 2010. In 2011, one of these sites was extended to include a further planting of over 600 eremophilas, and over 600 local eucalypts (many bare rooted). At present there are over 3200 eremophilas on the three sites and present survival rates (including all experiments) are about 86%.

The cost of translocating rare species is very high therefore you need to use the most appropriate methods to ensure survival of the plants, for example, planting without regular watering is a gamble in our drying climate. In 2009 a small non-irrigated trial worked well with a 68% survival rate, in 2010 a similar trial using over 100 plants resulted in every plant dying within 4 months of planting.

The project is funded by Evolution mining (previously Catalpa Resources) and the sites are managed by BGPA with assistance from Catalpa Resources staff and the Shire of Westonia.

You may also be interested in Conservation Biotechnology.