Tree Poppers for Privet Removal

Dandarrga Landcare on the Dorrigo Plateau

Tree Poppers for Privet Removal

Dandarrga Landcare on the Dorrigo Plateau

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The issue

Dandarrga Landcare group are a new and active group in the Dorrigo Plateau.  We are working to build the capacity of Dundurrabin Community Centre volunteers and landholders in weed control, to reduce the invasive woody weed privet along sections of the Blicks River, Billy’s Creek, Deep Creek and the outskirts of Dorrigo. 

While smaller privet was able to be managed readily by volunteers, larger privet up to 60mm is difficult to remove and requires a mechanical removal method.  To reduce the cost and impact on our volunteers of hand-pulling, digging and chemical weed control we needed to improve and upgrade our limited bush regeneration tools.

The solution

Dandarrga Landcare were successful in gaining funding of $1000 through the Regional Australia Bank and NSW Landcare and help from Clarence Landcare to purchase one large and one medium Tree Popper online, from Tree Popper Australia ( This ensured our volunteers had the right tools at hand. 

Tick Proof overalls from Safari Life and other PPE items (goggles, masks, first aid kit) also ensure that volunteers can work safely. The Tree Poppers are now used twice weekly by community volunteers.

The impact

The Tree Poppers have proved to be sturdy and effective tools for mechanical privet removal.  They are well liked by volunteers as a tool of choice and can be used by even the least physically able of our members. The risks of injury or chemical exposures are also significantly reduced.

The PPE is used widely in all projects and for collecting hay and manure from the Showground stables, while making compost on site at the Dandarrga Natives Nursery, and when ‘frilling’ privet on project sites. 


Considerable local interest has been generated by news and photos of the Tree Poppers on our website and through social networking and by taking them to local events, markets and shows.  They are portable, easy to use and have proved not only useful in weed control but also in Landcare community engagement. 

Key facts

  • Tree Poppers are used at the Dundurrabin Community Centre Revegetation Project, Tuesday and Thursday mornings every week by Work for the Dole participants.
  • Tree Poppers, PPE and First Aid Kit are used by volunteers at project sites on private land at Dundurrabin, Billy’s Creek and Dorrigo, and at the Dandarrga Landcare Natives Nursery.

Project Partners