My Bushcare experience – Chris King

By Chris King, member of East Hills Group, and convenor of Inner West Environment Group

The Inner West Environment Group

The Inner West Environment Group (IWEG) is a volunteer bushcare group that envisioned and established a green corridor that has become the GreenWay. The corridor links the Cooks River to Iron Cove through the inner western Sydney suburbs of Hurlstone Park, Dulwich Hill, Lewisham, Summer Hill, Haberfield and Leichhardt. It mainly follows the light rail line to Dulwich Hill and the Hawthorne Canal.

IWEG was instrumental in the creation of other sites along the GreenWay corridor in Summer Hill and Haberfield, which are now organised by Inner West Council (IWC).

Melaleuca nodosa which does well in the clay soil (photo: Chris King)

How it works

Group members volunteer at four sites along the light rail corridor at Dulwich Hill.

Our work is now supervised by a bushcare contractor employed by Inner West Council. Our remit is to enhance habitat for birds and animals through bush restoration of the local Sydney Turpentine Ironbark (STIF) plant community. We practise the principles of bush regeneration, which include leaving weedy areas that may be of high habitat value, and only replacing them once native plants are established that will provide equal habitat value for birds, reptiles and other animals. We plant ground cover, shrub and tree layers to exclude weeds and make the sites self-sustaining. However the war on weeds is never won!

Waratah Mills site Dulwich Hill ca. 2014 (photo: Bruce Ashley)

Supporting bird habitat

There are some areas of dense thickets that the small birds love and find protection in. Unfortunately the corridor is narrow and has to accommodate a walking/cycling track so this diminishes its habitat value and makes it prone to domination by Noisy miners and Grey butcherbirds. But it serves as an important area of connectivity for migrating birds on their seasonal movements in spring and autumn. This produces some unexpected delights such as recently when we saw a Rose robin.

More information

For more details see our website: http://www.iweg.asn.au/

For more details of the whole GreenWay, see:


Take action

Find out more about your local Council’s Bushcare program and how you can help conserve Australian native plants.

Read about the Bushcare experience of another East Hills Group member, Graham Fry, here.