Gazania Free Goolwa

In March 2018, the “Gazania Free Goolwa” campaign was launched to encourage residents within the township of Goolwa to remove gazanias from their gardens and roadside verges.

Follow the campaign and like us on Facebook  

What is a gazania?

Gazanias are a common garden plant, introduced to Australia from South Africa. Gazanias are an invasive environmental weed, and present a significant threat to the health of natural ecosystems.


Why remove gazanias?

Established plants reproduce by seed, which can disperse 1km or more from the source, and through Rhizomes, producing a dense carpeting groundcover. In coastal environments, there is a potential for gazanias to form a continuous groundcover, which chokes out native vegetation. Because of the damage that gazanias do to our natural environment, they are declared as noxious weeds under the Natural Resources Management Act 2004, and therefore must not be sold or purchased anywhere in the district, and must be controlled in parts of the coastal strip.

Council staff and volunteers are engaged in the removal of gazanias from reserves in Goolwa, particularly in the dune system along the coastal strip. The work is vital to preserve the biodiversity of bushland areas, but can only be successful if new plants do not re-establish where older plants have been removed. We are appealing for the help of local residents by asking them to remove plants from private gardens and road verges, so that they do not contribute to the re-establishment of gazanias in bushland reserves.

How can I get involved?

        1. By participating in the Gazania Plant Swap

Alexandrina council is encouraging all residents to remove gazanias from their gardens. Initially the focus will be on the Goolwa Beach area, near the coastal dune system. Beginning in March 2018, residents of Goolwa can participate in the Gazania Free Goolwa Plant Swap. Participants will receive ten free plants per household in exchange for gazanias removed from their properties. The swap will occur at the Alexandrina Community Nursery, which grows and sells local native plants that will enhance the biodiversity value of gardens in the Goolwa region. Don’t delay, as the number of participating households is limited!

Alexandrina Community Nursery is located on Kessel Road in Goolwa, and open from 9am to 5pm every Friday.

If you are planning to remove Gazania’s from your roadside verge and replant, you need to submit an Application to Alter a Verge. The form is simple to fill out, and ensures that your replacement garden doesn’t create unforeseen problems!

        2. By entering the Gazania Free Gardening Competition

Make sure to take some photos of your garden before its makeover to enter in the competition.

Option 1: Hardcopy competition form to print off, complete and hand deliver with photos, available here

Option 2: Enter competition online and upload your photos here, and please ensure you have read the competition judging criteria and rules

All events will be updated on this webpage, and on the Gazania free Goolwa Facebook page. By liking the Facebook page, you will ensure that you receive updates on events planned throughout the year, and gain tips on how to replace gazanias in your garden.

Campaign Highlights

Congratulations and thank you for the support of the Gazania Free Goolwa campaign, since the launch in March 2018. It has been pleasing to see so many households taking up the challenge to remove gazanias from their gardens and roadside verges, and claim their free plants in return. We were also very pleased with the response to the great gazania grab, and publicity in the media.

Alexandrina Council and our project partners have promoted the campaign in as many pays as we can, but it is really the community that is making all the difference. The preliminary results of a survey of Gazania plant swap shows that nearly a third of those who came to Alexandrina Community Nursery with Gazanias said that they had been encouraged by a friend or a neighbour. That means only one thing: we continue to need your support to spread the word further. Let your neighbours know that the gazanias in their gardens are producing seeds that could return the weeds to your garden, and display the “My Garden is Gazania Free” sticker proudly on your green bin or letterbox.

While the Gazania Plant Swap continues, we are encouraging residents not to delay taking part, as the stock available for the swap is running out quickly! And don’t forget to place an entry in the Gazania Free Garden Competition.

Benefits of backyards for biodiversity

As urban areas have expanded, natural bushland has been fragmented and largely confined to small conservation reserves. This is true of Goolwa, where council and the local community are working hard to preserve the last remaining areas of native vegetation in its urban biodiversity reserves (such as the Goolwa sand dune system). However, there is no reason why backyards can’t be rich in native plant and animal communities. 

You can help improve your local environment by choosing to plant indigenous plants in your garden. Backyards for biodiversity help to conserve native plant and animal species and create links between isolated bushland reserves. They also add colour and life to your backyard by attracting native wildlife such as birds. On top of that, it makes practical sense to choose indigenous plant species because they are adapted to the conditions, and therefore require less maintenance, less water, less fertiliser, less pesticide – basically less fuss! There are lots of resources available to show you how others have gone about creating a backyard for biodiversity.

About our campaign partners

Gazania-free Goolwa is a collaborative project between Alexandrina Council, the Goolwa to Wellington Local Action Planning Association, Goolwa Coastcare and Alexandrina Community Nursery.

The campaign is an initiative from Alexandrina’s Environmental Action Plan, and is in direct response to Alexandrina council’s “Thrive in Clean Green Futures” strategic objective.

Where else can I buy local native plants?

Hindmarsh Island (Tuesday 8:30am -4:00pm)

Clayton (Monday and Tuesday 9am – 4:30pm)

Milang (Monday and Tuesday 9am – 4:30pm)

Where can I find more information about enhancing backyard biodiversity?

Information on controlling weeds including gazanias from Natural resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges

An app designed to help identify and control weeds, including gazanias from the SA department of Primary Industries and Regions

Tips on improving backyard biodiversity from Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges

Coastal planting guide from Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges

Ideas for ways to replace gazanias in your garden and to join the campaign will be made available on the Gazania Free Goolwa Facebook page

gazania free goolwa
Community cooperation at the Gazania Free Goolwa plant swap.