Time’s running out for free paddock tree guards

Monday 17 April, 2023
Private landholders with farms in the Goulburn Broken catchment have until 30 June, or sooner if supply runs out, to receive up to three free paddock tree guards from the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA).

Landholders can receive the 1.8 metre purpose-built mesh guards designed to protect vulnerable saplings, either naturally regenerating or planted tubestock, from stock and wildlife. The guards need to be used for indigenous trees and not planted other species.

The tree guards are available through the Goulburn Broken CMA ‘On Your Guard’ program which is part of the Australian Government’s National Landcare Linking Landscapes and Communities project that works with landowners, communities and Traditional Owners to protect and enhance the region’s grey box grassy woodland environment.

Goulburn Broken CMA Project Officer, Janice Mentiplay-Smith, said the program was very popular, with around 740 paddock tree guards distributed since the beginning of the project, five years ago.

“Under the project, landholders have done some fantastic work planting trees, controlling pest plants and animals and installing fencing to protect vegetation on their properties,” Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

“However, not all actions need to be expensive, big or complex to be effective for biodiversity and agriculture.

“An often overlooked yet vitally important piece of our landscape are the paddock trees that dot our paddocks and provide important shade and shelter for stock and stepping stones for wildlife to safely move through the landscape.”

Ms Mentiplay-Smith said many paddock trees were dead or dying with no follow-up generations.

“This program encourages landholders to protect those naturally emerging self-sown seedlings that germinate around the parent tree or to use the guard around a planted tree where a future paddock tree needs to be."

Guard supplies are limited. Landholders need to contact Janice Mentiplay-Smith on 0418316169 or email

This project is supported by the Goulburn Broken CMA through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

Free paddock tree guards are now available from the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority.

The Goulburn Broken CMA acknowledges and respects First Nations people and the deep connection they have with their land and waters.

We acknowledge the Yorta Yorta and Taungurung people and their ancestors/forbears as Traditional Owners of the land and waters in the Goulburn Broken Catchment (and beyond). We value our ongoing partnerships with Yorta Yorta Nation Aboriginal Corporation and Taungurung Land and Waters Council for the health of Country and its people.

We pay our respects to Elders past, present and emerging and acknowledge and recognise the primacy of Traditional Owners obligations, rights and responsibilities to use and care for their traditional lands and waters.

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