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Community, Environment

National Tree Day planting to support habitat for rare butterfly

Planet Ark Environmental Foundation 2 mins read
Friends of Bungala River Community Group will plant Bitterbush for Bitter-bush blue butterfly (Theclinesthes albocincta). Photo credit : Photographer LFHunt courtesy Butterfly Conservation SA Inc.

The Friends of Bungala River Community Group will bring volunteers together on Saturday 8 July 2023, to plant 800 specialist native seedlings at a much-loved community park in the coastal town of Normanville on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia­. These passionate hiking and gardening enthusiasts hope to repair riparian zones and rejuvenate plants along the Bungala Riverbank in support of dwindling butterfly numbers.  


Coastal Bitterbush (Adriana quadripartite) will be planted in support of broader butterfly recovery programs being undertaken along the coast of South Australia to create habitat and an essential food source for the rare Bitter-bush blue butterfly (Theclinesthes albocincta).


When the Park was first established a few years ago the area was quite degraded and some initial clearing of Feral Olives, Pines and other weeds was executed and re-vegetation using indigenous native plants began,” said Lyndall Booth from Friends of Bungala River Community Group. “The tree planting event will give us an opportunity to infill the existing plantings and plant along the degraded riverbanks.”


These nature care efforts are being made possible by a grant from Planet Ark’s Seedling bank program in the lead up to the organisation’s National Tree Day campaign. The program launched in 2019 with the goal of supplying native seedlings to schools and community groups participating in National Tree Day activities across the country. 


“The Seedling Bank is our way of giving back to the thousands of Australian volunteers who roll up their sleeves each year to give something back to the environment as part of National Tree Day,” said Rebecca Gilling, Planet Ark CEO. 


“We have already directly supported over 132 groups in their efforts to plant almost 74,000 native trees, shrubs and grasses since the program’s inception.” 


Thanks to the grant from The Seedling Bank Lyndall says the newly formed group has been able to support a community-based, volunteer run local nursery to purchase bitterbush seedlings and leverage the planting in support of the recovery of the Bitter-bush blue butterfly.


Schools Tree Day (July 28) and National Tree Day (July 30) are Australia’s largest annual tree-planting and nature care events, with plantings taking place across the country on the last weekend of July. 


National Tree Day is an initiative organised by Planet Ark in partnership with major sponsor Toyota Australia and its Dealer Network. For more information and to find events in your local area, please visit





Key Facts:

-The Friends of Bungala River Community Group will be planting 800 specialist native seedlings this Saturday 8 July 2023, 9am to midday at a community park in Normanville on the southern Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia­.


-The planting will help support recovery programs for the rare Bitter-bush blue butterfly (Theclinesthes albocincta).


- Schools Tree Day (Friday 28 July) and National Tree Day (Sunday 30 July) are Australia’s largest tree-planting and nature care events. 


- Planet Ark’s National Tree Day started in 1996. 

About us:

About Planet Ark 


Planet Ark Environmental Foundation is an Australian not-for-profit organisation with a vision of a world where people live in balance with nature. Established in 1992, it is one of Australia’s leading environmental behaviour change organisations with a focus on working collaboratively and positively. Planet Ark promotes and creates simple, positive environmental actions – for everyone. 

Contact details:


Lyndall Booth

Bungala River Group

0438 806 239|


Pamela Jolly

Communications Coordinator, Planet Ark

0404 238 838 |


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