UPDATE Saturday, June 3: Due to the wild weather hitting southeast Queensland this weekend, the 2016 LEAF Festival has been cancelled.
Logan City Council has inspected the area and deemed it unsafe in current conditions to hold such a large event.
LEAF will return in 2017.
Native beauty and technology will come together this weekend at the Logan Eco Action Festival (LEAF) at Griffith University’s Logan campus.
LEAF, an annual interactive and educational event designed to stimulate broader community awareness of environmental issues, builds on Griffith’s tradition of promoting native plants as they provide habitat for native fauna and diminish the stranglehold of weeds.
The event, which coincides with World Environment Day, is expected to attract more than 7000 visitors who will enjoy live music, demonstrations, workshops and children’s activities surrounded by the diversity of plants on campus, including the Griffith University Arboretum planted in collaboration with the City of Logan.
While Griffith’s popular GrowsATGriffith app can be used to identify 300 species of plants growing on its campuses, the University is now collaborating to create a new gardening app to take the process a step further.
The GroNative app is being developed by Griffith University and Gold Coast-based environmental consulting and environmental education company Natura-Pacific, with funding from the Queensland Government’s Advance Queensland Knowledge Transfer Partnerships program. It will help gardeners across South-East Queensland use natives to make their gardens even more beautiful and sustainable.
“We are lucky to be living in a region of amazing biodiversity,” said Griffith University’s Professor Catherine Pickering.
“There are over 3000 native plants in South-Eastern Queensland, and increasingly many of the best of them are available to grow in our gardens. At Griffith University we are promoting the use of native plants in gardens both because of their beauty and conservation values, and because they are less likely to jump the back fence and become weeds.”
Professor Pickering said the new app was expected to be available in early 2017.
“Whatever garden style you want, be it Tuscan, cottage garden, formal, courtyard, rainforest or wild, this app will help you chose the best local plants to use,” she said
The app will feature photos for 250 Australian plants in cultivation, and information about how and where to grow them.
“You can use it to work out which plant works best in your garden, based on the size, shape and colour and the sorts of flowers and fruit it produces,” said Professor Pickering.
“It will also let you select which local plants are bird attracting, water-wise, hardy, provide shade, or will survive in that shade spot in the back of the garden where nothing seems to grow.”
In addition to using the app on a smart phone or tablet, the information can be accessed on the web, along with virtual tours of gardens including the Arboretum at the Logan campus.
Professor Lesley Chenoweth, the Pro Vice Chancellor and Head of Griffith’s Logan campus, said the University was proud to have been a partner with the City of Logan for the LEAF festival for many years.
“We have seen LEAF grow to be one of the biggest and most exciting environmental festivals in South-East Queensland,” she said.
“Griffith boasts world-leading research in environmental sciences and sustainability, as well as degrees preparing the next generation of environmental practitioners. LEAF showcases much of that expertise as well as demonstrating the importance of partnerships between the University, industry and the community.”
LEAF is being held at Griffith University’s Logan campus on Sunday, 5th of June, 2016, from 10am to 3pm.