February has been a hot and busy month for myself and no doubt many of you as you commence the working year in earnest.
The National Council will have its first official meeting on 8 March. In the interim, Kim and I have been in discussions with our preferred insurers who have renewed their commitment to our organisation in providing economical and discounted products. We look forward to a productive ongoing relationship with Fitzpatrick and Co. for the benefit of all members. Please don’t hesitate to contact me or our Secretary, Mr Kim Morris for a referral to the appropriate operative.
Thanks also to Kim Morris for his liaison with David Thompson, our website manager who has also been refining our database and will, within the next couple of weeks be launching our upgraded website. This is very exciting and David is gaining great pace with his improvements and innovations.
As many of you are already aware, your institute has been involved at the Consortia level in the PlantSure project which is a scheme to eventually reduce the sale of ornamental weeds. On 23 February, an important stakeholder meeting was held at Parramatta to investigate the concepts and address questions critical to the selection of a successful mechanism and scheme. The article reprinted in this report sets out a little more detail. It is important to note that once instrumental, this scheme could be considered for national application.
The Plant Collector’s Fair, sponsored by our institute, will be held in Sydney in April. This is a great chance for members to meet and welcome new members and students. In addition, the annual Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show (MIFGS) will be held in March. Another great opportunity for members to gather, liaise and encourage new designs and ideas and potential new members.
Nic Rivett FAIH and our Melbourne convener, Michael Casey, will be having meetings in Melbourne in the next couple of weeks relating to our Urban GreenScape award winners Far East Consortium (FEC). I am aware that several of our regional groups are meeting to refine workshop topics for the year and I look forward to reporting those very promptly on our website.
I would also be very pleased to hear from individual members who have workshop ideas or requirements.