North Shore District Group


Friday Night Meetings 2018

Meetings are held at 8.00 p.m. on the second Friday of the month at:

Willow Park Community Centre, 25 Edgeworth David Avenue, Hornsby, NSW. 

Plant sales from 7.45 p.m.

Upcoming meetings 

13 April 2018

 Speaker   Aaron Phillips
 Topic "Exploring Aussie genes to improve productivity in food and fibre crops suffering from heat stress "   
Aaron was our Scholarship winner for 2017. His research aimed to study a photosynthesis-related gene from  domestic and wild species of cotton (Gossypium) and tobacco (Nicotiana) and three populations of kangaroo grass (Themeda triandra) to understand how these plants respond to increased temperature, using glasshouse and laboratory experiments. He found that wild species demonstrate a range of responses to increased temperature, and that mutations in the photosynthesis-related gene may contribute to these differences. The research may have big implications for adapting plants to deal with climate change.    

11 May 2018


  Ross Rapmund


  "Showy monocots"


What’s a “monocot”? Come to this talk to find out more about this intriguing group of plants and how they produce some of our best known floral displays. We’ll look at the local diversity, distribution and how they can grow in your garden.    

9 June 2018


 Dr. Graeme Wells


  "Climate change and how it affects the distribution of Australian flora."


Graeme asks “In times of unpredictable climatic disruptions can Australian native flora really cope?” In considering this challenging question, he will refer to the ancient topography and soils of Australia and probable changes to bird and insect distributions.  These may affect the distribution of native flora.

Graeme has worked for the CSIRO Division of Fisheries & Oceanography, then for the Department of Environmental Physics at Sydney Uni. He was awarded a PhD from the School of Biological Sciences, Sydney Uni. He is a specialist on mangrove vegetation across northern Australia and has done extensive field surveys from the Kimberleys to the Gulf of Carpentaria.

13 July 2018


 Vic Cherikoff


  "Selecting and preparing local wild foods.'


Vic will explain how to identify and cook with wild foods of the Sydney region and also why we should be eating them for our health.
He will have copies of his recent book, “Wild Foods” available for sale on the

10 August 2018


   Barry Lees


  "  Hornsby Herbarium    "


The Hornsby Herbarium is both a physical and an online collection of plants that grow in the Hornsby Shire. It has been developed over many years by members of our Group, and is highly regarded by professionals, researchers, bushcarers and the general public. Barry manages the Herbarium and will describe the history and ongoing work being done to maintain this valuable resource, and ways that you could help.    

14 September 2018

 Discussion Leader:

  Sue Bowen


  " Show and tell from member’s gardens    "


This is your chance to celebrate Spring! Bring along a piece of your favourite plant and tell us how it grows and why you like it. Attach a tag with your name and the plant name (if you know). Also bring pen and paper so you can note the plants you might like to add to your garden.       

12 October 2018


  Daniel Sloane


  " Dieback of Melaleuca floodplain forests in northern Australia "


Melaleuca freshwater forests act as strongholds of biodiversity, flood regulators, groundwater rechargers and climate change regulators. Melaleuca forests can also be used for medicine, building shelters and canoes, carry-barks for babies, mosquito repellent, for cooking and ceremony. Recently Aboriginal people in northern Australia have expressed concern that the forests have begun to die off on many coastal floodplains. Collaboration between University scientists and the Yolngu people of north-east Arnhem Land was established to better understand the problem.  The project is now being expanded to use drones, satellite data, water and salinity data loggers to produce detailed models of the forests with the aim of reversing the losses.

Come to the meeting to find out more about this intriguing research       

9 November 2018


  Olga Blacha


  " Bird-scaping your garden "


Olga is an enthusiastic and entertaining speaker. She will describe the landscaping and plant selection choices that you can make to attract birds to your garden.

Olga Blacha is a horticulturist and landscaper, co-owner of Sustainable Natives, a wholesale nursery located at Somersby on the Central Coast. She holds a Master's Degree in Landscape Architecture from the University of Canberra, a Master's Degree in Landscape Design from UTS and a Doctorate in Landscape Architecture from the University of Newcastle. She was involved in the planning of Mt Penang Gardens.       

14 December: Christmas Party at the Ku-ring-gai Wildflower Garden

Previous meetings 2018

 9 February 2018

 Tegan Burton
 Topic  "The role of NPWS in protecting our flora" 

In this talk, Tegan will explain just what a NSW National Parks Ranger does and how they care for our plants. The role covers a broad spectrum of conservation land management and other off-park related issues. Tegan will provide an overview of this diverse role as it plays out in the Sydney metropolitan area, and w

ill discuss some of the many projects she’s been involved in where our native plants have played a significant part.

9 March 2018

Narelle Smith (APS member)
 Topic  "Local bush foods.'

Narelle will introduce many local plants that can be eaten. Some require preparation to ensure no harmful effects. She will encourage the audience to share their experience and knowledge.

This talk will replace that previously advertised. Vic Cherikoff will now talk to us on 13th July 2018

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