Site visit to Kyneton – May 2023
We were delighted to meet Michelle & Keagan. They are two new regenerative farmers on a small farm near Kyneton in Victoria. It was wonderful to see how they are using mulches as well as regularly moving their heritage breeds: with a pair of woolly-eared cattle, and of flocks chickens and geese! The land has historically been used for agriculture we were delighted to not only find some indigenous mycorrhizal fungi like Laccaria but evidence of surviving remnant mycorrhizal fungi associated with old Eucalypts but also Blackwood Acacias. Finding two species of Amanitias and Russula and Lactarius species!
We are pleased that they now are able to us the iNaturalist app to help get started with fungi identification (ID) and importantly to record the fungi on their property. This will give them data in the future as they restoration continues.
We hope to visit again in a few years to see the restoration mature.
I enjoyed having on-property advice and expertise that was tailored to what we were seeing on the day. We were able to ask lots of questions, get our hands dirty and there were a few surprises along the way – Russulas!
Originally we were interested in understanding which fungi we had on the property and which of these we could eat! But the site visit really gave us another lens on what we’re trying to do to regenerate our property.
We learned how to take correct photos for ID, how to use iNaturalist and more generally how to start to up our Id skills. We also learned that we have remnant fungi we should look to protect and will change our grazing pattern with our cattle to do this. I hadn’t appreciated that there were indigenous and exotic fungi and the importance of using different types of mulch to ensure we have different microclimates to protect remnant fungi.
We want to balance self sufficiency with regenerating our property and we’ve learned that fungi play a role in helping us to achieve both!
Yes, we would absolutely recommend you. The site visit was fun, interesting, pragmatic and and you went out of your way to make a tricky subject accessible.