Welcome to North East Downs Landcare Group Inc

North East Downs Landcare (or NED as we are affectionately known in the catchment area) was formed in 1994 as a management group for Landcare activities across the north- eastern Darling Downs area. NED is based at Oakey, 30 kilometres from Toowoomba.


The NED region covers approximately 7000 square kilometres. NED has 450 members within their twelve sub-catchments. Our goals for the future are to work towards assisting people adapt to climate change and recognising opportunities to further enhance their lives for the better. One of our goals is to update the catchment plans for our twelve subgroups taking in to account current climate change issues and adoption of improved land management practices.


We are actively working with young Landcarers in schools to educate and encourage them to work with the environment to protect and improve it. We look forward to continuing this work in the future. NED will continue to work with Landholders to embrace and use new technologies such as improving soil carbon. We are now trying to enhance the capabilities of women in the Ned area and extend this invitation to the whole of the Murray-Darling Basin.

Landholder Profile John McPhail

John is a member of Gomaren Doctors Creek Landcare Group. He and Bernadette live at “Myrtle Farm” near Goombungee. In 2003 the local Landcare group received funding to restore old cultivation back to pasture. John had a paddock that had previously been part of a dairy farm and had been used to grow oats.

Cow peas were planted to try and increase the fertility of the paddock but this didn’t work. There was a significant rainfall event and everything washed away into the corner of the paddock so the paddock had to cultivated again before the pasture could be established.



Love Queensland. Let's keep it clean


The Queensland Government’s Love Queensland. Let’s keep it clean campaign aims to create awareness of major littering and illegal dumping sites around the state. It also encourages Queenslanders to take responsibility for their litter and waste. 

Illegal dumping and littering are serious issues—they cause environmental harm, decrease visual amenity and aesthetic values and cost state and local governments, businesses and communities millions of dollars each year in clean-up expenses. 

Learn more



North East Downs Landcare Group Inc.


Chairman’s Report presented to the Annual Meeting on Thursday 15th October 2015.


I have pleasure in presenting this Annual report on behalf of the North East Downs Landcare Group Inc.

I have now completed the fourth year as the Chair following my appointment at the AGM in 2011, following an additional period as Relieving Chair for a number of months earlier in 2011.

The Management Committee continued to meet on a bi-monthly basis throughout the 12 months, in addition to other occasional meetings eg fill treasurer position.

Landcare has many facets, with many different approaches by Members & Groups. However, the ultimate aim in all activities is the longer term sustainability of all our natural resources, diversity and farming systems. On this note, it is pleasing to see so many committed Landcarers across the North East Downs.     


A snapshot of the some of the events and activities for 14/15 include:

·         Ashley Volz attending the National Landcare Conference late in September 2014 as the Qld Young Landcarer of the Year,

·         Ashley being selected as a Landcare Director of Condamine Alliance,

·         Celebrating 25 years of Landcare at a dinner in Oakey on 17th October, 2014,

·         Attend the Condamine Alliance Awards dinner in Toowoomba on 31st October, 2014,

·         Continuing partnerships and participation with Condamine Alliance (CA), Qld Murray Darling Commission (QMDC), Darling Downs Regional Landcare (DDRL), Condamine Catchment Management Association (CCMA), Qld Water and Land Carers (QWaLC), Regional Landcare Facilitator, Conservation Farmers Inc. (CFI), and other organisations,

·         Representation by Owena on the QWaLC (Qld Water and Land Carers) Board, along with the Secretarial role,

·         Involvement with and attendance at DDRL meetings in Oakey and Millmerran,

·         Representing Landcare at the Toowoomba Regional Council Pest Management Committee meetings, Jan & Sept 2015,

·         Welcoming the appointment of the new Regional Landcare Facilitator Steve Lacey to the Downs, who has just resigned with Rod Kerr now relieving in the role, (Nicole Gammie resigned late in 2014)

·         The scheduling of a broad range of workshops, field days and bus trips across the NED Area, Downs, and beyond,

·         Further involvement with QMDC on the ‘roadside litter project’ with interviews by ABC radio,

·         Keeping the Website updated, with our thanks to Vonnie Bridson,

·         The untiring efforts by our Support Officer / Co-ordinator, Owena Reimers, and ongoing extension of her contract to the end of 2015. Owena puts in many additional hours and goes above the ‘call of duty’,

·         Continue to implement and complete a range of projects, albeit fewer, with all associated recording, accounting and reporting timelines met due to the efforts of Owena, Glenys, Kimberley, Allyson & Davida.


Current topics & challenges:

  1. NED will celebrate its 21st birthday in 2015 with a dinner night scheduled for 28th November, at Oakey,
  2. The need to update the NED 2010 > 2015 Plan within the next year.
  3. Though the National Landcare Program was released earlier in the year, the funding stream for groups such as NED is much less due to greater competition for the public dollar.
  4. Maintaining membership and interest in Landcare, as the modern concept of volunteerism combined with the changing demographics, is changing the face of many communities. Succession planning remains a critical point.
  5. Maintaining all forms of communication with all members, in this era of digital technology.
  6. Increasing numbers of feral pests and a wider variety of environmental weeds & grasses across the NED coverage area.
  7. Developing a sustainable future for agriculture and grazing, including nutrient management, with the forecast climate variability & change.
  8. Compliance in all aspects ie Legislative and administrative.
  9. Being aware of the Megatrends, eg More from Less, Planetary Pushback, Forever Young, The Silk Highway, Digital Immersion, Changing Boundaries and Great Expectations, along with the associated pressures, as we produce sufficient food to feed the World, whilst managing our Natural resources.



I thank Owena, from the NED office, for her dedication and support throughout 14/15. I also acknowledge the ongoing and very capable attention by Glenys to the Secretarial role, and assistance to the Treasurers during the respective transitions.

Due to her marriage to Jonathan and relocation to Central Qld, Kimberley relinquished the Treasurer’s position in Feb / Mar 2015. We wish Kimberley well and thank her for 12 months of valuable support. We welcomed Allyson Chen to the role late in March, however after approx. 3 months; Allyson resigned due to family health and personal reasons. We wish Allyson and her partner good health and happiness.

We were fortunate and thankful that Davida Schemioneck subsequently accepted the invitation to take on the role. Davida has hit the ground running and fitted into the new role very well. 

On behalf of the NED Landcare family, ie sub groups and members, and the broader community, I express our sincere appreciation to these ladies. They have been professional at all times and done it well. These roles do require due diligence with attention to detail and timeliness for recording and reporting.


Additionally, I thank Ashley, David, Desley and Cheryl for their commitment, ongoing support and input to the Management Committee.

I thank every one of you for your fellowship, interest and support during 14/15, and encourage you to stay involved with Landcare, and tell your friends and neighbours, the whole community, that Landcare is still present and functioning across the Downs, albeit with reduced funding. We do need to keep sharing the good stuff and innovation that you are doing on the ground.


It is also timely that we take a moment to remember any dear members and friends who have passed away in the last 12 months.


We look forward to the year ahead.





Graham Cooke,

Chair – NED Landcare Group Inc.

North East Downs Landcare Public Fund

Heritage Building Society

Account Number: 7485182

BSB: 638-080

Learn more

Farm Agronomy

Queensland Water and Landcarers

Condamine Catchment Management association

Condamine Alliance

Landcare Australia