Plant Study Group in the Wolgan Valley Plant Study Group in the Wolgan Valley  (Meredith Brownhill)
Plant Study Group - About Us & Projects

About us & Projects

Yearly programs (with reports from outings where available):
2024    2023    2022    2020    2019    2018    2017    2016    2015
About Us
Plant Study Group on a field trip on Crown Land at Chapman Parade, 14 August 2022.
   Alison is pointing to a threatened species, Leucopogon fletcherii Plant Study Group on a field trip on Crown Land at Chapman Parade, 14 August 2022. Alison is pointing to a threatened species, Leucopogon fletcherii (Janice Hughes)
The Plant Study Group (PSG) members are all enthusiastic plant lovers who delight in the beauty and complexity of plants and who wish to deepen their knowledge of our Blue Mountains flora.

In the field we learn together as a group, observing and sharing our discoveries. There is no formal teaching. We study the morphology of the plants' flowers, leaves and fruits, and note their habitat needs, plant community, fire response, variability, etc. Inevitably our observations include appreciation of the wider ecosystem, in particular the interaction of birds and insects with plants.

We meet on the second Sunday of each month and travel to different locations in the Blue Mountains, enabling us to see a diversity of plant species and communities. Our walks are leisurely strolls, usually a half day or a little longer. Bus trips are also organised to take us further afield (eg. Central Tablelands or Cumberland Plain). See our trip reports from the year index above.

The Plant Study Group is open to all members of the Society. As well as the relevant annual Society membership you will need to also pay the annual $20 bushwalkers insurance fee.

Beginners are welcome. A recommended book to get you started is Native Plants of the Blue Mountains by Margaret Baker and Robin Corringham. 2nd edition, Winmalee, NSW, Bower Bird Books, 2004. We’ll let you know about other printed and digital resources we commonly use in the field.

Here are our group guidelines and our current year program is linked above.

Please contact Meredith by email at for further information.

Interesting fact: The Plant Study Group met for the first time on 17th April 2005 at the Conservation Hut.

Our Projects

Note: 2023 outing reports are found on the 2023 schedule webpage.

2022 Survey of Red Gum Park, Bullaburra
Working at Red Gum Park June 2022 Working on the survey at Red Gum Park, June 2022
Re‑connecting post Covid, the BMCS Plant Study Group undertook a flora survey of Red Gum Park in Bullaburra in June 2022.

The site assessment was done for Blue Mountains City Council to establish the recovery of native flora on a Bushcare site in the park. We found that the bushland is recovering well after a cool mosaic burn, with a good diversity of native species present – a total of 101 species were identified.

It was an interesting and enjoyable morning in Red Gum Park.

Here is the:

Bathurst Copper Butterfly
Bathurst Copper Butterfly Bathurst Copper Butterfly  (Robin Murray)
One of our yearly joys is to visit the Bathurst Copper Butterfly and its specialised ecosystem.

The Bathurst Copper Butterfly, Paralucia spinifera, likes the plant Bursaria spinosa ssp. lasiophylla as habitat and has a mutually agreeable relationship with an ant called Anonychomyra itineras.

This is a species specific relationship and just any ant or any Bursaria, is just not good enough!

Agnes Banks Woodland
In 2014 the Plant Study Group made a submission to NSW Scientific Committee commending and supporting the Preliminary Determination of the Committee to list Agnes Banks Woodlands as a Critically Endangered Ecological Community.

The Group visited Agnes Banks Woodland Reserve on three occasions and concluded the Extinction of the Woodland is a distinct possibility and that listing of Agnes Banks Woodland as a Critically Endangered Ecological Community is justified.

Here's our submission.

Impacts of Fire on an Endangered Species
Leucopogon fletcheri ssp fletcheri Leucopogon fletcheri ssp. fletcheri  (Robin Murray)
An exciting research project developed from our discovery of a small population of Leucopogon fletcheri ssp fletcheri in Winmalee.

L. fletcheri had just been burnt in a hazard reduction fire in 2009 and as the plant is endangered, we set up an annual survey to study the impacts of fire on the species, which we hope will assist NPWS, Council and the RFS with fire management.

Here are our survey reports from 2009 - 2014 and 2018.

Overcliff Track
Drosera binata Drosera binata  (Robin Murray)
Another of our projects was a flora survey of a Hanging Swamp on Overcliff Walking Track at Wentworth Falls.

Hanging Swamps are a listed endangered ecological community under the EP&BC Act 1999 and degradation of this swamp on a popular walking track is a threat to the ecological function of this unique community.

The survey report in 2014 was submitted to National Parks & Wildlife Service to support their application for funding to install a boardwalk through the swamp.

Here are:

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We acknowledge the traditional custodians of this land
– the Darug and Gundungurra people –
and pay respect to their Elders past, present and emerging.
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