Regional Herbarium

A New Species of Androcalva Found Only in York
Androcalva sp. QThe greatest thrill we have had in 2017 is to FIND A NEW SPECIES !! As yet an unnamed species of Androcalva , several plants were located on a degraded roadside in York and the FIRST TO BE FOUND IN THE WORLD !! This must alert us to the importance of our roadside native flora and even the most degraded road verge may hold potential for more than weeds. Searching before destroying or removing should be carried out to ensure that we retain as much of our remnant vegetation as possible, particularly those rare or threatened. Once removed it is almost impossible to bring back natural diversity. Congratulations Audrey and team.

 

 
Carol Wilkins Androcalva adenothalia

 

 

 

 
Darwinia thymoides subspA healthy catchment produces a healthy river

The Shire of York is blessed with a rich diversity of flora, including a significant number of threatened and priority plants, including Stylidiums, Thomasia, Leschenautia and Acacia.

Darwinia thymoides subsp.St Ronans is a ‘near threatened” or Priority Four plant, which members of the River Conservation Society rediscovered and photographed in the spring of 2016. 15 plants were located at a site in the St Ronan area. Unfortunately, another site with a previous recording of the plant did not reveal any specimens.

From the 1990s the RCS have collected and identified plant specimens from many reserves in the York Shire. A majority of these were identified by botanists at the WA Herbarium. Over 2500 specimen vouchers have been logged into a database by Audrey Sole. The database includes plant descriptions, soil types and their locations . Work is continuing with the RCS to include a library of photographs for the specimens. The database will eventually be made available to the public and offers an important record and research tool.

It is also hoped that the database will assist in the preservation and conservation of the huge diversity of plants in the Shire of York, many of which are located in vulnerable small areas of remnant bush.

Volunteers who are computer literate and have a strong interest in local flora are needed. Please ring Audrey Sole on 9641 1428.


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Pink everlastings (Rhodanthe Chlorocephala ssp. Rosea)

The York Regional Herbarium was established by the River Conservation Society in 1992 as a comprehensive repository of local flora specimens collected from private bushland areas and Crown Reserves

The Herbarium houses flora specimens from all significant remnant bushland blocks within the Shire of York in Western Australia, such as Mt Bakewell Reserve, Wallaby Hills Reserve and a large number of Crown Reserves managed by the Vale of York Reserves Committee and the River Conservation Society.

Flora specimens collected for the herbarium are field identified and then preserved through pressing and drying to maintain specimen properties and original colouring. The specimens are then mounted, covered in a clear protective sleeve and catalogued. Flora specimen details are then entered into the herbariums database with accompanying colour digital photographs. This process enables further detailed identification to be undertaken at the River Societies conservation centre utilising the herbariums resources. Further samples are sent to the West Australian Herbarium for further identification and confirmation of specie collected.

The establishment of a regional herbarium is an important step in identifying and recording plant diversity for historical and future scientific reference. It is an ideal aid for identifying and selecting plants endemic to areas chosen for revegetation projects, or for further scientific research to be undertaken to establish and identify flora diversity and bioecological relationships within areas of ecological significance.

The York Regional Herbarium specimens are housed at the historic Sandalwood Yards on the corner of Avon Terrace and Ford Street, York, Western Australia. A detailed electronic database of all specimens collected, including colour digital photographs, has been compiled by the Society and presented to relevant government departments for inclusion into their own Flora collections.