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Saturday, May 06, 2017

Gilmour Park - Ferntree Gully

My visit of May 5, 2017.

The Park is reached from Lysterfield Rd, then along Glenfern Rd to a signed turnoff.

This 4·3-hectare site contains a narrow strip along the natural course of Ferny Ck, plus an adjoining retarding basin and lake which were constructed in 1973. Elevations vary from 120 m to 130 m. 

Between them, the creek and the retarding basin occupy the full width of the floodplain of Ferny Ck, and all of the soil is alluvium washed down by the creek. In places, the bed of Ferny Ck exposes the underlying Devonian volcanic rock (rhyodacite), part of the Dandenong Ranges.

The retarding basin fulfils an important drainage function. The lake and the rest of the land are used for public recreation and nature conservation. The City of Knox has placed signs around the park to explain the site’s ecological significance and the fauna that is found there. Wildlife, including Platypus, represent a large part of the site’s conservation significance. 

The remnants of native vegetation on the site are of Riparian Forest. The artificial lake in the retarding basin has become colonised by predominantly indigenous wetland flora. There are substantial numbers of very large, old Manna Gums on the creek banks. Environmental weeds are a serious degrading influence, as usual along creek corridors, but they are being kept in check. 

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