Enjoying a gentle stroll through the Yass Gorge

Ryl Parker reports on a walk by Murrumbateman Landcare Group hosted by Friends of Yass Gorge

SUNDAY, 24 SEPTEMBER 2107. The wind was hot and fierce, but within the Yass Gorge all remained still. The dense shrubbery and steep rock face protects the area from strong winds, while still allowing plenty of sunlight and birdsong to keep the casual walker satisfied.

Friends of Yass Gorge were joined by Murrumbateman Landcare on a walk through the gorge. I was amazed by the number of Grey Fantails we saw – beautiful little birds that hop and flit through the air; their tails opening and shutting like ladies playing with their paper fans. 

One walker was looking for inspiration for her garden, so we pointed her to the rock lilies (Bulbine glauca) that are currently in flower on the hill. Rock lilies are always striking, with their strange hollow stems and bright yellow petals, but they’re also very tough and adore rocky slopes. Indigenous people once ate the starchy tubers that grow on the lily’s roots. Once you have the plant in your garden, you can also propagate it by carefully cutting off tubers from the parent plant after  flowering.

If you walk through the gorge in the evening, you may see one of the many swamp wallabies that forage there. Wallabies help manage weeds by grazing them regularly, thereby reducing the number of plants that go to seed and spread. But like all animals, wallabies prefer the tender foliage of young plants. You have to protect seedlings carefully or they’ll be gobbled up. Swamp wallabies will happily eat grass, forbs, shrubs, ferns, sedges, rushes and even fungi.