An extremely rare plant listed as endangered has been identified in Ballarat’s Victoria Park.
The recent discovery of Dianella amoena or the Matted Flax-lily in Victoria Park is of significant local conservation importance.
Listed as an ‘Endangered’ plant under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, it is the first time this plant has been recorded in Victoria Park.
Matted Flax-lily as the name suggests is a tufted, mat-forming perennial lily that grows in native grasslands. It has beautiful flowers with reflexed petals that vary from pale blue to violet blue and are found on branched stems 20 – 30cm tall. The flowers are highly fragrant.
The Matted Flax-lily is only found in Victoria, and in 2010 there were only an estimated 2500 plants known from only 120 sites.
Many of these populations are located on private land or roadsides, which puts them at risk from urban development and changing agricultural practices. The protection of these plants in public parks like Victoria Park plays a vital role in the long-term survival of the Matted Flax-lily.
Ballarat Mayor Samantha McIntosh said the find showed the importance of Victoria Park not only as a recreation space but as a site for native plant conservation.
“The Victoria Park native grasslands are unique in that they showcase a broad indigenous plant diversity, in an accessible central city location. Over 70 indigenous plant species have been recorded,” Cr McIntosh said.
Victoria Park is an area of over 130 hectares of Crown land, which is managed by the City of Ballarat in partnership with the Department of Environment Land Water and Planning (DEWLP).
DEWLP are the State Government agency responsible for the preservation of indigenous plant and animal biodiversity.
The City of Ballarat works in partnership with DEWLP to preserve important parkland and native habitat for rare flora and fauna, and in conservation projects for several endangered local plant species.