APS members in the media in January 2020

By enewsletter Editor

Three APS NSW members were featured in the media in January 2020.

Conny Harris

Conny Harris, President of Northern Beaches Group, was featured in the Sydney Morning Herald on 24 January 2020 for saving Aboriginal carvings by very generously buying bushland threatened by development at Cromer Heights.

As soon as they owned the six hectares of land, Conny and husband Anthony Harris asked for the 36 carvings and rock shelter to be added to the list of protected Aboriginal places. The NSW government has recognised the area’s “exceptional significance”, declaring it protected. The artefacts have been declared an Aboriginal Place, meaning they cannot be destroyed or altered without a permit from the heritage office.

Read the article “‘Protect all of this’: Victory in the fight to defend Aboriginal carvings” by Janek Drevikovsky here.

Greg Bourke

Blue Mountains Botanic Gardens, image Heather Miles

APS member Greg Bourke, who spoke on carnivorous plants at our May 2019 quarterly gathering, successfully saved his home in the Blue Mountains from fire. An ABC 7.30 interview with Greg can be viewed here.

Greg has also been also busy fighting fires in his day job as Curator of The Blue Mountains Botanic Garden at Mount Tomah. Unfortunately, about a quarter of the living collection was lost.






Rhonda Daniels

Sydney Morning Herald columnist Jenna Price was looking for an APS Sutherland Group member to speak to after a holiday visit to the Royal National Park. Rhonda Daniels, secretary of Sutherland Group, answered the phone on a Sunday evening and was quoted in Jenna’s article on Tuesday 31 December 2019 titled “Parched suburban dreams now dying by gardeners’ own hands”.

“You can see the impacts of climate change with a gradual reduction in moisture and higher temperatures,” she says. “It’s beyond drought.”

Daniels is secretary of the Sutherland Group which completed a list of plants seen on the coast walk in the park 14 years ago and she saw the impact of the major fires in 1994 and 2001 on her much loved park. “Some plants can resprout and send out leaves really quickly – but if there’s no water at all, the plants just die. The banksias have been hard-hit and a lot are dying, weakened by the drought, it’s very sad for people who love plants. It’s a whole ecosystem, the plants depend on the animals and the animals depend on the plants.”

If you see an APS member in the news, please email the enewsletter editor at enewsletter@austplants.com.au