Launch of the State of Tasmania Seed report

30 May 2024 |

Landcare Tasmania is thrilled to launch a new research report for the Seed Resilience Project. The Seed Resilience Project is an on-going project that aims to improve the capacity to supply native seed for biodiverse revegetation projects into the future.

The State of Tasmania Seed report (2024) discusses the problems and solutions with native seed supply in Tasmania. It contains information on the national native seed sector, a summary of the issues in Tasmania, examples of seedbanks from other states and outlines how to improve the seed supply in Tasmania.

Image: Seed collection and propagation workshop in Mountain River. © Rowiina Howard

Read the report here. 

The report, written by Ruth Mollison with contributions from Landcare Tasmania, forms part of the Seed Resilience Project. The goal of this project is to look at different ways restoration seed banks can be established and create a network of people who are involved and skilled in the collection, storage and distribution of native seed to meet the demand of revegetation projects in Tasmania.

Tasmania has many unique plant species that grow nowhere else in the world. Many of these plants are threatened by land clearing, climate change, fire and grazing pressure. There is a growing demand and commitment by landholders to revegetate with endemic species wherever practical. Native plants are required for biodiverse carbon offset planting, for habitat regeneration in degraded landscapes, in coastal and riverine sites for erosion and nutrient mitigation, on farms as shelterbelts and in urban areas for private gardens and urban landscape designs. By collecting and propagating native seed for revegetation projects, we can help to preserve these species and maintain the biodiversity of our local ecosystems.

The most important factor in the supply chain for native seeds is the seed collector. A capable seed collector has experience in locating accessible sites for certain species, knowledge of seasonal seed ripeness, and training in botanical identification. Also, an understanding of the principles of seed collection, such as ensuring a genetic mix, minimising damage to vegetation and obtaining permits is required.

Following collection, good seed cleaning, drying and storage facilities are required to ensure maximum viability of seed stocks. For seeds to be available for others through exchange or sale, seed lots need to be entered onto a database. To ensure good quality seed stock, there needs to be batch control tracking and germination testing.

Image: Seed collection and propagation workshop in Mountain River. © Rowiina Howard

With the Understory Network and Island Seeds, Landcare Tasmania has held 10 seed collection and propagation workshops with 146 attendees across the state. These workshops aim to teach Landcare members and the wider community the importance of collecting and growing local provenance seed, contributing to our wider Landscape Restoration and Community Outreach Programs.

The events contributing to the Seed Resilience Project have been funded through the State Government's Landcare Action Grants and Community Environmental Program, and Brighton Council. The workshops were delivered in partnership with the Understory Network, Island Seed, NRM South, Brighton Council, Huon Valley Council and MTWAC.