Plant Stories

As part of the West Kimberley Nature Project, Environs Kimberley worked with the Bardi Jawi Oorany Rangers to support their horticultural activities, including seed collection, propagation and plant production for restoration activities within monsoon vine thicket sites subject to weed and fire management with the Bardi Jawi Rangers. SKIPA supported activities by supplying nursery materials and sharing their knowledge and techniques for growing plants, many of which have not been grown previously.

In collaboration with SKIPA and the Bardi Jawi Rangers, Environs Kimberley worked with the Bardi Jawi Oorany Rangers (women rangers) to develop a community-based publication to collate Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) about some of the plants within Bardi Jawi Country- specifically those that are important within the Threatened Ecological Community: Monsoon Vine Thicket (MVT).

Boonyja bardag gorna – All the bush fruit trees are useful; for fruit and medicine.” (Plant Stories)

MVTs contain many fruits, medicines and tools that are important in Bardi culture. Many MVT’s, found as small patches behind the sand dunes, are also important sites for Biidin (fresh water under the ground), camping and ceremonial areas and law grounds. In addition, MVTs are recognised as a Threatened Ecological Community.

We know our country. It is important that we record and share our Traditional and practical knowledge and keep it alive within our communities. We want our young people to know and protect country and keep it healthy” (Plant Stories)

Bardi Jawi people have a wealth of Traditional Knowledge about the biology and ecology of their land and sea country. This exciting project collated Traditional and botanical knowledge about each of the plants; Albay Ficus virens; Birimbiri Diosypros humilis, Goolay Planchonia careya, Goolmi Grewia breviflora, Goolyi Caesalpinia major, Gooralgar Flueggea virosa, Iidool Pandanus spiralis, Iilarr Syzgium eucalyptoides, Joongoon Mimusops elengi, Mangarr Sersalisia sericea  and  Marool Terminalia petiolaris;  and provides information about where and when the plants grow, the relationships to the Bardi seasonal calendar, germination cues, fruiting and flowering and some Traditional uses as well as the variety of birds and other animals that utilise these plants.

The booklet was compiled for and distributed back to the Bardi Jawi community and will be a valuable resource for schools, communities and ranger groups.

These pictures are extracts from the community publication. Click on the pictures here and in the following links to view at full size.

Thanks and appreciation to the following people and organisations: