Grasslands are dominated by perennial, mostly tufted or tussock-forming grasses and occur on the vast, undulating western volcanic plains, the northern alluvial plains and in Gippsland.
They frequently lie over heavy soils which become waterlogged in winter but dry and crack in summer.
While trees and shrubs are only occasionally present, they are floristically rich, not only in grasses but also in colourful plants from the orchid, daisy, pea and lily families that flower in spring and early summer.
More about grasslands
- Kangaroo grass is dominant south of the divide, wallaby grass and spear grass abundant in the north
- Many form ephemeral flooded native meadows in winter
- Soil dries rapidly in summer
- Support rare animals, adapted to changeable environment e.g. the Bush Stone-curlew, Eastern Barred Bandicoot and Striped Legless Lizard
- Aboriginal people used fire to maintain the open nature of the grasslands, stimulate the growth of useful plants and attract animals for hunting
- European settlers found that the expansive grasslands provided good grazing and were easy to convert to cropping and improved pasture.
Less than one per cent of original grasslands remain, in small remnant patches with low viability. These patches are threatened by:
- Weed invasion
- Infrequent fire regimes that inhibit growth of diverse flowering herbs
- Altered nutrient levels that favour weed growth.
Where to see grasslands
13 Apr 2016
Parks Victoria’s new CEO Bradley Fauteux has received his new Victorian fishing licence, and is all geared up for his first fish in Australian waters, on the iconic Lorne pier. He is certainly in capable hands, being shown the ropes by Mr Dallas D’Silva, General Manager of VRFish, Victoria’s peak…
1 Jul 2015 12:00am - 30 Jun 2016 12:00am
A wide variety of events are held at Albert Park throughout the year. Events range from fun runs and sporting tournaments to other community events. See the full calendar here.
3 May 2016 6:00pm-8:00pm
You’re invited to attend an information session on work underway to protect the endangered Eastern Barred Bandicoot at Woodlands Historic Park. Talk to staff from Parks Victoria and experts from the Eastern Barred Bandicoot Recovery Team about the reintroduction of Bandicoots into a predator proof enclosure in the park’s ‘Back…
14 May 2016 9:30am - 15 May 2016 12:00am
BirdLife Australia is holding a weekend of events exploring threatened birds of the Murray Mallee and the importance of appropriate fire management in their conservation. On Saturday at an information session at DELWP Mildura, 308 Koorlong Rd, Irymple hear from researchers from La Trobe University, DELWP and BirdLife Australia, then…