Community nursery celebrates 25 years

Nicolette BarbasHarvey-Waroona Reporter
Leschenault Community Nursery chairman Brendan Kelly and manager Kim Rossiter get ready to celebrate 25 years since the nursery first opened.
Camera IconLeschenault Community Nursery chairman Brendan Kelly and manager Kim Rossiter get ready to celebrate 25 years since the nursery first opened. Credit: Nicolette Barbas

On Saturday the Leschenault Community Nursery celebrated 25 years since first opening its doors.

Chairman of the not-for-profit organisation Brenden Kelly said the nursery was established following a conversation in the hallway of what was known as the Leschenault Inlet Management Authority depot.

“It was a conversation between Sir Donald Eckersley and the then manager of LIMA Eric Wright,” he said.

“They had this conversation in the hallway about getting some plants and trees for the farmers to put in their paddocks and having somewhere for the farmers to purchase them.

“I remember Sir Donald Eckersley scratching his chin and saying yeah good idea let’s do that.”

A quarter of a century later Mr Kelly said the nursery had come a long way, with 95 per cent of what they grew being botanically associated with the original South West provenance.

“When I started any plant was a plant,” he said.

“What we have done in the South West now is local provenance, that’s a big first.

“We are to some extent purists about putting back into this country what originally came from this country – it’s our brand.

“We are growing local plants for local use and that is our point of difference.”

With over 250 different species of plants available at the nursery, manager Kim Rossiter said working with the volunteers was one of her favourite things about the job.

“My job is very rewarding, we have people from all walks of life come through our doors,” Ms Rossiter said.

“Sam, who has been coming in twice a week for about seven years has an intellectual disability and he loves coming in, he calls it his job.

“Volunteers are of intrinsic value to the organisation,” Mr Kelly added.

For a man wearing many different hats, including a Bunbury City councillor, Mr Kelly said he hoped to see out another 25 years with the nursery and aimed to increase the overall percentage of revegetation.

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