When the Roadside Vegetation Management Plan was but in place in 2010, Friends of Edna Walling signed up for leading maintenance of the streetscape though replacement of large trees that have to be removed when they die or become an obstruction.
One of our Golden Rain wattles (Acacia prominens) at the north-east end of Bickleigh Vale Road had to be removed in July 2012 when it leaned too far into the road and two others died and were removed in September 2014.
It's taken us a while to find a source of replacement trees or the same variety but we finally got there and found three in 150cm pots. Since the original trees were removed, the stumps remain and other plantings have taken place so the new ones couldn't go into exactly the same spots but the end result should faithfully reproduce the look and feel of the streetscape which is what we set out to do.
Of course, we now have to wait 10 years for them to grow!
Tree #1 - Southern side of Abbotsley entrance
Tree #2 - Northern side of Abbotsley entrance
Tree #3 - Northern side of Abbotsley entrance
To our dismay, late in the day on Tuesday, the Coastal Tri Tree (Leptospermum laevigatum) that formed one half of the iconic arch in Bickleigh Vale Road outside The Shielan and Mistover developed a serious lean across the road and had to be removed overnight.
The Arch as it was in May 2016...
It's topping and grading time again and with Lilydale topping now unavailable, Coldstream topping was used for the first time. Aesthetically, it looks pretty good and consistent with the heritage. We'll see over the next few months how durable it is.
It was a pretty good turn-out again with workers big and small and we gave the roadside a good tidy-up:
Unfortunately, the edge of our beautiful new surface at the end of Bickleigh Vale Road is being damaged by the weekly garbage truck run as it completes its 3-point turn. It would seem that the only way to avoid damage here is to put rebuild part of the Wimborne driveway with heavy material such as rocks or sleepers.
Food for thought!
As planned the contractor from the Council came yesterday with truck of 6-8 m3 topping and a bobcat and levelled the bowl at the Bickleigh Vale Road turning circle. They have built up the Wimborne side so that run-off will flow into the gutter on the Abbotsley / Littlewood side and have checked the fall with architect levels. Today, They came back with a rammer and packed it down.
This completes the work outlined in our earlier blog posts (road-maintenance-problem-and-solutions.html and december-topping-and-grading.html)
Looks pretty good!
Late in the afternoon, the rain began in what turned out to be a major event. Melbourne Water later confirmed that it was a greater than a 1 in 50 year rainfall intensity event in the Mooroolbark area.
The Shire advised that, as such, they have had over 550 requests for repairs to damage caused by the storm and will get to them - inclusing Bickleigh Vale all as soon as they can with their first priority being houses directly impacted by water.
Following previous discussions with the Shire after the last road maintenance work and our agreed plan for this time, more extensive work was carried out this time.
Ian Pearson from the Shire, their Contractor and his operator had all been out to site to discuss the work to be done prior to commencement of the work. The plan was to put the remaining Lilydale toppings in the turn area at the end of Bickleigh Vale Road, put some of the new Coldstream toppings product in Edna Walling Lane and leave some for us to fill potholes.
Because they were going to apply dust suppressant to Bickleigh Vale Rd (an annual event), the Contractor didn't want to put too much of the new rock on Bickleigh Vale this time in case it affects the dust suppressant.
Bickleigh Vale Rd turning circle
Ian Pearson has advised he'll meet the contractor again on site just before the next maintenance run to ensure the new Coldstream toppings are built up sufficiently in the turning circle to allow the profiling of a gutter on both sides as originally planned.
Another successful working bee focussing on basic maintenance this time:
Part of the ongoing program to preserve the country lane character of Bickleigh Vale Road and Edna Walling Lane as originally envisaged by Edna Walling is the renewal of senescent trees and shrubs as they die and are removed. Replacements do not necessarily have to be with the same species; the aim should always be to retain Edna Walling’s vision for a country lane.
With this in mind, and supported by Yarra Ranges Council who provided the trees, three replacements of large trees which had been removed in recent years were planted during the working bee.
Replacement of Acacia Howitti (Sticky Wattle) with Acacia Melanoxylon (Blackwood) at the corner of Bickleigh Vale Road and Edna Walling Lane
Replacement of Quercus Coccifera (Kermes Oak) with Quercus Rubra (Red Oak) in Bichleigh Vale Rd near the boundary between The Shielan and Hurst
Replacement of Pinus Muricata (Bishop Pine) with Pinus Pinea (Stone Pine) at the corner of Bickleigh Vale Rd and Pembroke Rd outside Hurst