News Buzz


News Buzz

Kambarang Season (October - November 2022)

Book Launch - Annette Mullumby's

"Strategies For Digging Out Onion Grass"


On Saturday, 17th of September, the Centre celebrated another book launch. This time it was Annette Mullumby's 'Strategies For Digging Out Onion Grass' published by Mulla Mulla Press. The Ed room was beautifully decorated with native flowers, flowing fabric, and soft lights. A gathering of about 60 friends and well-wishers filled the room. Si Mullumby hosted the show, beginning with a moving acknowledgment of country and resonating notes of didgeridoo accompanied by harmonious piano tunes. Jaya Penelope gave a touching introduction to the book. There was poetry, music, books on sale, food, drink, introductions and heartfelt exchanges. All in all, it was a truly memorable event. Word about the Centre being a stunning venue for book launches is spreading!

Annette Mullumby studied literature at UWA and became an upper-school English teacher. Later she reskilled as a psychotherapist. Trained in Butoh, she enjoys creating dance as a response to landscape. After retiring she devotes her time to writing poetry, pottering in the garden and enjoying her grandson. She has been widely published online and in local journals and is well know in the Perth Poetry scene.

News from the Nursery

There is so much happening at the Centre’s Nursery this season and we are excited to tell you all about it! The Nursery has always been a place of coming together, working, volunteering and spending time on joint projects. As well as preparing for community planting and propagation days. Today, it is so much more—the Nursery is thriving.

The Western Wildflower Gardens team is playing a crucial role in revitalising the Nursery as the heart of the Centre. This is where they prepare cuttings and propagate saplings for planting. These saplings and cutting will go into the areas they have been contracted to develop, such as the front and back landscaped areas, the amphitheatre and the water wise gardens.

We have also been successful in obtaining seed collection licences from Department of Biodiversity, Conservation, and Attractions (DBCA). This adds so much value to our Nursery Operations as we prepare for the new year with renewed purpose and vigour.

Since the completion of the building construction work, we had been facing several issues with the way the reticulation had been set up and programmed. Needless to say, this was causing severe impacts to our Nursery as well as our Waterwise Gardens. We had since approached the City of Cockburn and raised our concerns with them. We are happy to report that the reticulation issues have been successfully resolved by City contractors.

We have also completed five planting sessions in various areas around the Centre using plants and saplings from the Nursery. The 28th of August planting day was also Lanie’s (Nursery Officer) first time leading a planting event.

A happy Nursery Officer with plants in the ground
A happy Nursery Officer with plants in the ground
29th of July 2022

Plants: 93 dryland plants
Where: East of Amphitheatre

5th of August 2022

Plants: 118 dryland plants
Where: East of Amphitheatre

12th of August 2022

Plants: 147 dryland plants, including priority 4 Doddonaea hackettiana and Kunzea glabrescens.
Where: East of Amphitheatre

19th of August 2022

Plants: 120 transition zone plants, Astartea scoparia.
Where: Near Narma Kullark Boardwalk, NRM revegetation site A.

28th of August 2022

Plants: 166 transition plants
Where: Narma Kullarck Boardwalk

Exciting programs happening at the Centre!

Our Poet-in-residence Program has paved the way for two new and exciting events that are happening at the Centre very soon. Book your seats and mark your calendars for these ones folks—these are never before seen or heard-of events that will surprise, amaze, delight and more. We've seen some insider previews, such as one of the practice sessions and we can say with absolute surety: it's not to be missed!

Here's a sneak-peek of the flute troupe practicing.


Writing Through Climate Anxiety –

A Youth Poetry Workshop


Explore the macro and micro ecologies around The Wetlands Centre Cockburn, discover fascinating techniques and features of Western Australian plants that help them survive and even thrive, and reflect on our own coping strategies for a changing world through written word and poetry. Don't miss this truly uplifting workshop by two of Perth's finest emerging poets, Lisa Collyer and Lakshmi Kanchi. You will also get a chance to submit your work for inclusion in a community-sourced anthology! This is a FREE event, but registrations are essential. Go to:

Date: Saturday, 29th October 2022 at 05:30pm

Venue: The Wetlands Centre Cockburn


An Evening of Flute Music and Eco-Poetry


A contemplation of the beauty and fragility of our ecosystems explored through poetry and flute music, presented by The Wetlands Centre. This event is a unique collaboration between Leeming Flute Troupe and award-winning poets living and writing on Whadjuk Nyungar Boodja. There will be some great eco-poetry, interspersed with evocative musical pieces performed by the Leeming Flute Troupe. A one-night-only event with limited tickets available at $10 per head.

Date: Saturday, 5th November 2022 at 06:00pm

Venue: The Wetlands Centre Cockburn


Work begins on Centre's Landscaping

We are truly excited about the long-awaited landscaping work supported through our Lotterywest grant to have begun in earnest. Two big jobs – weeding and repaving of the limestone paths are underway. All these lead to our waterwise gardens being upgraded to stunning wildflower gardens.

Native flowers require less water and maintenance than conventional landscaping flowers and plants and can better withstand our climate extremities. Wildflowers also add beauty to the landscape, provide food for wildlife and attract pollinators. Western Wildflower Gardens is at the helm and bring years of experience and success to this exciting project.

As the pathways started to be rejuvenated, it brought back cherished memories from times when these gardens were first spruced up in 2010 by volunteers of yesteryears, headed by Norm Godfrey.

Pictures below from 2010, when the Waterwise Gardens were first built.


Weeding—with a little help from young students of Curtin University

Have you been overwhelmed by weeds in your backyard? We have been feeling a bit of that lately. But then came the young helping hands! Students from Curtin University descended on the Centre and contributed their time to care for our waterwise gardens. We're hand-weeding, and making sure our delicate wildflowers stay safe while we get rid of the unwanteds, as opposed to spraying the gardens which could also end up killing the flowers. And woah! did we save some. The wildflowers pictured here have all sprouted in our gardens!!!

Thanks to Sue, Hazel and the team from Western Wildflower Gardens who guided us in this endeavour. Thanks also go out to Lotterywest who have made our new landscaping project possible. Exciting times ahead!


Caution: Work in Progress

The transformation of the 30-year-old main building continues with vigour: new wiring, new lighting, new utilities. The new kitchen is nearing completion — the appliances are lined up in the hallway waiting to be marched into their designated spots, ready for service. And the transformation we talked about has been put it, and we are absolutely excited for you to see it soon!

Consultations for the interpretive panels and outfitting of the gallery space are underway, bringing in fresh ideas, perspectives and inclusivity. We are waiting with bated breath while this takes shape.

We have found new homes for most of our kitchen and storage cabinetry. If you are interested in acquiring any of our old refrigerators or cold storage units, drop us a line and we'll be happy to show you what's on offer.

Please note that access to the Centre will be limited due to the ongoing capital works. Due to construction hazards and the risk of exposure to undiscovered or potentially present contaminants such as asbestos, Centre operations will be running at limited capacity. Although certain sections will be open, we request that you schedule any visits or bookings well in advance to avoid disappointment. The works began mid-June and are expected to last until mid to late November 2022.

1 comment on “News Buzz

  1. Always love getting your news as I have been to many of your wonderful conferences over the years as a representative of Men of the Trees, Mandurah. At present I am managing our Library and would be interested in purchasing Annette Mullumby’s Book “Strategies for digging out Onion Grass” Can you tell me how to go about this ?
    Many thanks … Judy Olsen .

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