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TLC Central Highlands Weeding 2022

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Event description

Over the past nine summers, dedicated volunteer teams have contributed over 550 days of work removing invasive weeds from the TLC's beautiful Five Rivers Reserve and New Leaf carbon properties, in Tasmania's Central Highlands. We estimate that together, we have removed more than 1,000,000 weeds from this important landscape!

This summer we're back at it again. We need three committed teams of volunteers for three successive volunteer trips. This approach will enable us to work efficiently to remove the threat of weeds across 20,000 hectares of beautiful highland landscape.  It's bound to be a lot of fun and a great chance to meet like-minded people, so express your interest today! 



  • The weeding dates are:
    • Friday 28 - Monday 31 January at Silver Plains, Interlaken  
    • Saturday 5 - Tuesday 8 February at Five Rivers Reserve, Bronte 
    • Monday 14 - Thursday 19 February at Silver Plains, Interlaken     
      • Ideally you will be available for four days in a row, however you are welcome to express interest if you are only available for 2-3 days in a row. Please do not express interest if you can only come for one day. 
      • We will start the first day mid-morning to allow for travel from home to the base accommodation. Volunteers can travel up to the base accommodation the night before the first day. 

      The activity 

      • We will break up into small teams of two to four people to search for weeds, either from vehicles or on foot. Each team will include a weeding expert. 
      • When we find weeds, such as ragwort and great mullein, we will either pull them out by hand, or spray them with a low-toxicity herbicide***. 
      • We will start work around 8.00AM each day, and will work until mid-to-late afternoon. With the longer daylight hours, after work there will be time to explore, have a swim and enjoy a delicious dinner provided by TLC. 
      • We need a minimum of eight volunteers per day.


      • All working bee activities will take place on TLC's beautiful Five Rivers Reserve near Bronte and our New Leaf carbon properties at Interlaken in Tasmania’s Central Highlands. 
      • We will send direction maps and other more detailed information a week or so before the activity. 


      • We provide accommodation at shacks at either Brady's Lake or Silver Plains Interlaken depending on where we are working at the time. 
      • The shacks are equipped with basic kitchen, bathroom and bedroom facilities. You can share bunk rooms in a shack or alternatively, pitch a tent or park a campervan or caravan outside or nearby. 
      • More detailed information about the accommodation will be provided before each weeding trip. 


      • Due to Covid-19 guidelines, the TLC will not be coordinating carpooling between volunteers for the time being. 
      • You may be able to get a lift with a TLC staff person although this isn't guaranteed. 

      Required knowledge, skills and ability

      • No special knowledge or skills are required; full training will be provided to ensure the work is performed safely and effectively.
      • A good level of physical fitness and mobility is required. You will be required to walk over rocky, hilly terrain at times. You will need to be able to work in hot or cold temperatures too. 
      • You will need good long distance eyesight (with eye glasses is fine) to be able to spot weeds.
      • You will need to be comfortable wearing personal protective equipment when undertaking spraying.*** Required personal protective equipment includes cotton overalls or a spray suit, safety glasses, gloves, a broad-brimmed hat and gum boots.


      • Your safety is our first priority. Before the activity commences, we may contact some volunteers to discuss their suitability in respect to safety. Before participating, we will require you to complete and sign a Volunteer Safety Form.  
        • Supporting COVID-19 containment efforts still requires everyone, including TLC staff and volunteers, to minimise contact with others and to take measures to help stop the spread. Accordingly, we will be implementing the following safety measures: 
        • The number of volunteer participants will be scaled-back at each activity.
        • We will keep records of attending volunteers for tracing purposes, in line with our Privacy Policy. 
        • Volunteers and staff will maintain a minimum 1.5 meter distance between each other while working and there will be no more than one person per 2 meters squared at indoor volunteer activities. 
        • Volunteers and staff will not be permitted to attend activities if they have the following symptoms: 
          • fever 
          • runny nose 
          • cough 
          • sore/itchy throat, or 
          • shortness of breath. 
      • Hand sanitiser will be available and its use encouraged at all volunteer activities. 
      • Common touch points will be wiped down with disinfectant wipes routinely. 
      • Tools will be exclusively allocated to individuals for the duration of the activity and washed thoroughly after use. 
      • The TLC will not be facilitating volunteer carpooling at this time. Volunteers will be encouraged to travel independently and individually to TLC volunteer activities. 

      What to bring

      • Your own food for breakfasts, lunches, and drinks in your own cooler. We will provide a delicious dinner for everyone each night.
      • If you choose to sleep in a bunk in a shack you will need to bring bedding including a sheet, pillow and sleeping bag.
      • If you choose to camp, you will need to bring your tent and camping equipment along with bedding.
      • Clothes suitable for hot or cold weather including lightweight clothes to wear underneath coveralls i.e. shorts, a t-shirt or singlet and thermals for cold days. 
      • A raincoat (just in case).
      • A broad-brimmed, washable hat. 
      • Gum boots or other rubber boots to wear if spraying and sturdy bush walking boots (we can provide a pair of gumboots for you if you require them). 
      • Towel and toiletries.

      Express now
      We really need a great response so please express interest now. We look forward to working together with you to secure a healthier highlands environment!

      Using low-toxicity herbicide
      *** Our weed control methods exceed best practice standards. Even so, it would be impossible for us to control weeds across such a large area using manual methods alone. This means using some herbicides where hand-pulling is not possible or practical. For this project, we use a low-toxicity herbicide called Associate, which is selective, meaning that it only affects certain types of plants. With careful spraying, we have no impact on the surrounding vegetation. This herbicide also has a minimal effect on mammals, birds and fish, and we use it in such low quantities that it does not enter the water table. It also breaks down rapidly in the soil, which means that it does not have a lasting effect on the environment.

      Spraying is usually only a small component of the work day (averaging about 30 mins – 1 hour), with most of our time spent searching for weeds as we drive along tracks or walk through grasslands. If you would personally prefer not to spray herbicide, you are still welcome to express interest for this activity, acting as a weed spotter and puller, however preference may be given to volunteers who are willing to spray.

      If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Phill Laroche on 0438 826 606 or

      Photo credit: Phill Laroche

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