Journal of the Australian Native Plants Society Canberra region (Inc)

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A Drive to Dalton

By Christine Kendrick

June 2023

Mowed area of Dalton Cemetery

Dalton Cemetery

After cancelling the week before, our walk in April turned out to be a beautiful autumn day. The Cemetery at Dalton had been mowed. Council seem to extend their mowing further each year, but we did manage to find and identify quite a few plants on the list.

 Amazingly, the dear little Goodenia hederacea managed to grow and flower below the mower blades, as well as several Parson’s bands Eriochilus cucullatus growing and flowering in the mowed area. Our botanist was absent so we had a couple of mystery plants which turned out to be Dillwynia sericea and, half identified by Jeanette, Daviesia genistifolia which Roger Farrow later identified with only a sprig and no flowers or seeds. There was also an old, very thickly leafed Kurrajong, Brachychiton sp, which I presume had been planted years ago.

We had a late morning tea at the Dalton picnic area having spent longer than expected at the Cemetery. New members were intrigued by the fossil rock exhibit, discovered at a basalt lava flow which dammed the Lachlan River near the Jerrawa Creek junction. This last slab was taken to Dalton and used as a step for Wheatley’s Store before being moved to the present site by the then Gunning Shire Council to better preserve it. It is now listed by National Parks and Wildlife Service as a Geological Heritage Site.

 Broadway Travelling Stock Reserve

We then drove directly to Broadway Travelling Stock Reserve (TSR). Unfortunately, the gate had been removed and there were remnants of quite a few slaughtered sheep just inside the entry. Crossing the creek we traversed the TSR from the left in a circuit. Again, we discovered lots of Parson’s bands Erochilus cucullatus in flower as well as the remains of Sun orchids Thelymitra pauciflora, T rubra, Microtis parviflora and Calochilus platychilus — all urging us to return again in Spring. Melichrus urceolatus is always a reliable flowerer on most, if not all, Wednesday Walks and it was all over the TSR. We discovered burr-daisy, Calotis anthemoides and Isotoma fluviatilis were in flower around the dam with several other water-loving species (here we really missed our water botanist). Red-anther Wallaby grass, Rytidosperma pallidum put on a good display for us as we walked around. The day ended with a good coffee and cake at the Merino Cafe in Gunning. Thanks to all who attended. You made it a great day.

Specimens: Dillwynia sericea and
Daviesia genistifolia
Viewing the fossil
Isotoma fluviatilis

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