Plants tell us about the health of our country

From woodlands to jungles and paperbark forests, there are thousands of species of plants in the region – some endemic to this part of the world.

If they flowering at the wrong time might let us know there is something different with the seasons or if fire is not happening right.

The red flowers of Balgurr tell us when sharks and stingray are fat.

Ngattu or warraga, the strong smelling damper made from the fruit of the cycad, feeds big gatherings of people for ceremony in central Arnhem Land. It has been estimated that cycad country can produce more food per hectare than many cultivated crops.

But that food must be prepared properly to take out the poisons before it goes in the ashes. It’s the same for cheeky yams — we cook them to soften them, slice them with the shoulder blade of a kangaroo and soak the yam chips in running water to take out the poisons. Only then can we eat them.


Healthy Country Plan

We know that the land needs its people to care for it and to keep it healthy. In the same way we know that caring for the country keeps us healthy - physically, spiritually and mentally.

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