What Future for Chilean Needle Grass in our Region?

A facilitated conversation with community at the Guyra Show

What Future for Chilean Needle Grass in our Region?

A facilitated conversation with community at the Guyra Show

Building our Future -


The issue

Southern New England Landcare through various contact points within the Guyra community and in review of the MEPAAW project survey, identified that Chilean Needle Grass (CNG), a highly invasive introduced grass species, has for many years continued to be a significant concern in both the urban and rural Guyra community. Various activities have been undertaken to address the issue over the years. Results from these activities coupled with current research, local knowledge and experience together formed the content for a public conversation asking the question 'What does the future hold for Chilean Needle Grass in the Guyra region?'

The solution

A conversation with community about Chilean Needle Grass, hosted by our Local Landcare Coordinator, at the Guyra Show.  We invited four local guest panelist with backgrounds in land management, education and research, to share their knowledge, experience and wisdom in relation to CNG management.  In addition to the land managers in our audience we also invited representatives from local government and agencies, University of New England, local agribusinesses and New England Weeds Authority to be involved in the broader questions and discussions. A display and resources with information specifically targeting pests and weeds were on hand for the duration of the Show.  The Mepaaw project provided funds to engage Dr Judi Earl and Mr Derek Smith.  

The impact

This approach to engaging the community in meaningful conversation achieved the following benefits,
1. Hosting in a public space has advantage of having capacity to reach a broader audience, 2. Facilitated conversation was a novel approach that appeared to engage audience, 3. Discussion panel made up of respected people that have shown leadership in their approach to the CNG challenge, 4. Alternative approaches to CNG management presented, 5. Opportunity for our Landcare Coordinator to follow up with participants, potentially forming an interest group with a focus on pasture monitoring.


Key facts

  • Be vigilant at recognising the management practices that allow CNG to establish.
  • Weeds are valuable indicators of what is happening in the soil.
  • Encourage farmers to trial different approaches using grazing management and soil balancing.
  • Maintaining good stands of native pasture with 100% ground cover has been effective at deterring CNG.

Project Partners