a tree identification tour with Ashley Sewell

Sunday 4th May, 10am – 1pm

Book Here
$55 per person (includes entry ticket to Maleny Wood Expo and tour booklet about sites visited)
Leaving from and returning to Maleny Showgrounds

BYO lunch or if time permits, lunch may be purchased at the Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve café.

Wear comfortable clothes and enclosed footwear, and bring hat, sunscreen and water bottle.

Maximum number of participants 22

Ashley’s passion for trees will become evident as he shares his extensive knowledge of our local vegetation, cabinet timbers and ecosystems.

On the tour he will discuss the relationship between local geology and current existing vegetation as well as native forest species identification, selective harvesting, milling techniques and timber values for furniture and building.

The tour will visit two sites: Jowarra Reserve on Landsborough sandstone, and Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve on the basalt soils of the Maleny plateau.

Jowarra Reserve has three distinct vegetation communities: wet and dry sclerophyll forest and coastal lowlands rainforest. The wet sclerophyll is dominated by hardwood species of Blackbutt, Rose gum, Pink bloodwood and Brush box. The understorey comprises a broad mix of rainforest species from Bangalow palms to longer lived rainforest species such as emerging Figs, Black bean, Blush tulip oak and Rose satinash.

Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve is 40 ha forest with over 280 species is one of the last stands of remnant notophyll rainforest in the Sunshine Coast and Hinterland region. The reserve structure is always changing as trees grow old (senescence) and are replaced by natural regeneration, which on this site is abundant.

Ashley Sewell has been conducting botanical field workshops to help educate regional natural resource management bodies, local community groups such as Landcare and Catchment Care groups, and government staff for the past 10 years.

An ex Forestry/DPI Forest ranger, he has more than 47 years of field experience in native forest and plantation management on, the Sunshine Coast and Hinterland, Fraser Island, north Queensland rainforests, western cypress pine and other areas of south east Queensland.

An active member of the Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve committee for many years, Ashley has worked tirelessly to help ensure that this remnant retained its health and vitality into the future as one of the few remaining examples of the sub-tropical rainforests that once clothed the red basalt soils of the Blackall Range.

He was a founding member of Barung Landcare Association Inc in 1989 and is the father of the Maleny Wood Expo.

He has been involved with the Sunshine Coast Environment Council, and has long been an advocate of growing trees as a means of addressing many serious local environmental issues stemming from deforestation such as landslips, reduced water quality and habitat loss.

Ashley was instrumental in promoting and advising on early farm forestry plantations across the Sunshine Coast, and in particular, on boutique rainforest plantations in the Hinterland.

But his knowledge bank goes back much further than his own experience as he has made time to seek out and taken on board anecdotal information and stories gleaned from lost but not forgotten timber workers who put our boutique timbers on the world map.

Over the years Ashley, a keen woodworker himself, has built up a substantial collection of native timber samples, part of which he is making available for Expo visitors to view. These will be on display at the Timber Tree stand in the Main Pavilion.

Since retirement 6 years ago he has run his own farm forestry consultancy as well as his renowned botanical tours.

“Ashley’s ‘What Tree is That’ walk … was classed a great success. Forest ranger Ashley
Sewell gave our members a tree identification lesson, as well as advice as to what use the timber can be put…. a most pleasant and educational day.”
Blackall Range Woodcrafters Guild

“We are extremely grateful for the opportunity for our staff, volunteers, members and Green Army team to be able to participate in (Ashley’s) tours and to have access to such valuable knowledge.”
Mooloolah Waterwatch & Landcare Inc.

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