Minister visits our Native Seed Production Area is Western Sydney

On 20th May, Greening Australia hosted NSW Minister for the Environment, Mark Speakman, at our Seed Production Area (SPA) in Western Sydney

This facility enables us to mass-produce native seed for ecological restoration work in Western Sydney’s Cumberland Plain.  We’re now able to produce larger quantities of native species than has ever been possible before.

Minister Speakman joined Greening Australia Lead Scientist, Dr Paul Gibson-Roy on a walking tour. From there the group travelled to a Greening Australia grassland restoration demonstration site at Western Sydney Parkland which had been restored using seed from the SPA.

Dr Gibson-Roy, said “It was a real pleasure to host the Minister to our Seed Hub and then to a restoration site. He showed a real understanding of the issues around restoring biodiversity on the Cumberland Plain and strong commitment to ensuring steps are taken to halt the decline of the Cumberland Plain Woodland.”

“Arguably the most pressing issue facing efforts to restore species-rich Cumberland Plain communities is the critically limited availability of native seed for restoration work”.

Over the last 200 years land clearance has created small, fragmented pockets of bushland that can barely support themselves let alone provide the quantity of seed required to restore all the parts of Sydney identified through infrastructure and biodiversity offsetting projects. So going to a seed production model is our most obvious choice.

“In essence: without seed production, there’s no seed. Without seed, there’s no restoration. This means the native bushland of the Cumberland Plain and all the animals that call it home are likely to continue to slowly disappear.” Dr Gibson-Roy said.

“What we’re doing here is amplifying rare native seed resources in an attempt to future-proof numerous threatened ground layer species and revolutionise the scale and diversity of environmental restoration”

With some relatively simple but innovative techniques utilizing horticultural and agricultural approaches, native plants are grown as seed crops. Using agronomic principles ensures the plants are robust and healthy and produce large amounts of seed for harvest. It also means that weed competition is minimal. Together these techniques allow as to produce more native plant seed than would ever be possible collecting from the wild.

“It’s been scientifically documented that the restoration techniques we are beginning to roll out across Western Sydney can restore grassland ecosystems with as much or even higher diversity of both flora and fauna than many remnant grasslands in the wild. All we need is the seed and the determination and we can make a huge difference to our richness of our landscapes” Dr Gibson-Roy said.

Greening Australia would like to note the following companies, organisations and institutions who will have partnered with us in the start-up phase of this seed production area for Sydney.

  • The Australian Government
  • NSW Office of Environment and Heritage
  • Western Sydney Parklands Trust
  • Western Sydney University
  • Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment
  • Greater Sydney Local Land Services.

If you would like to make a contribution to the ongoing development of this seed production area to bolster its capacity to offer education and training opportunities to the community, or in speaking with us about partnership opportunities to support the development of the seed production area, integration of grassland restoration or ground layer seed supply into your project, please email us

Learn more about our work on seed resources for restoration here.