November 24, 2020

GJG. Quietly racking up forests.

Some of our tree planting partners are quietly racking up whole forestsG.J. Gardner Homes is one of our strongest supporters, having planted 56,000 trees with us over the past 8 years. That impressive number comes as a result of G.J. Gardner planting 15 trees for every home it builds in Tasmania and Victoria. And as a well-established building company with a reputation for quality and reliability, it is a popular choice.


Group photo of active tree planting volunteers.


G.J. Gardner prides itself on being a practical, hands-on family affair, and in past years staff have happily got down and dirty and planted their trees themselves. This year, of course, everything is a bit different, and volunteer groups are managing the actual roots-in-ground part of the process with small numbers of their own volunteers. To keep the local connection, all trees are planted near the offices managing the builds, between 200-900 trees for every district. Local Landcare groups work out the best trees for the job – usually indigenous natives – and source the seedlings. The seedlings themselves are often grown by local independent nurseries who have collected seed from the region by hand (with the proper licensing, of course).


G.J. Gardner’s core business is building homes. Safe, secure places for families to grow and thrive for many years to come. We love that alongside this G.J. Gardner is planting forests, which is very much the same thing – safe, secure places for fauna and flora to grow and thrive for many years to come.


New trees along the rail trail.


Fiona and Anthony Ruff from G.J. Gardner Homes Central Gippsland  are generous supporters of local community groups and their tree planting projects. This year Fiona and Anthony and their team purchased 300 native plants trees for The Gippsland Plains Rail Trail Committee of Management.


The Gippsland Plains Rail Trail Committee of Management is a volunteer organisation that is working to create, maintain and improve the Rail Trail that extends for 63 km between Traralgon and Stratford. A current project is to enhance a man-made wetlands at the edge of Maffra where railway infrastructure,  a ‘borrow-pit’ has been reclaimed by nature as a wetlands habitat. We have commissioned the creation of bird hides from old railway pylons and will plant indigenous trees to create habitat for native wildlife.

Historically railway lines were kept free of vegetation however the use of fire promoted the regeneration of some native species so that the Rail Trail contains remnant patches of indigenous flora. We are constantly working with Landcare and other community groups to extend and maintain the bio-links that the Rail Trail provides, and to improve the amenity of this well-loved and well-used community asset. The donation of trees by GJ Gardner Homes is greatly appreciated and will help connect pockets of patches of wildlife habitat, as well as connecting users of the Gippsland Plains Rail Trail with nature.

Our future plans are to create a native shelterbelt on a rural block to create habitat for native wildlife, protect an old red gum tree by adding understory plants, create linkages with neighboring native vegetation and showcase to other new home builders the types of plants that are suitable in our area and which create wildlife habitat. The planting will be done as a community day – within current Covid-19 restrictions – with our local Landcare Group and to raise awareness of the charity, ‘Rupert’s Rainbow’ that provides support to families during end of life and bereavement.

Thank you to GJ Gardner Homes for your generous support.

Sarah Dearne | Member | Gippsland Plains Rail Trail Committee of Management


If you are also interested in how your business and Fifteen Trees could work together, contact Melinda at <[email protected]> and ask for a no obligation proposal.


Writer – Sarah Hart.

Sarah is an artist whose passions include the stories and experiences of women and narrative driven creative work. Her aim is to delight, to reveal glimpses of everyday beauty, and to celebrate flights of the ordinary. Sarah works across a range of media, with an abiding interest in pen and ink, mixed media and the human form. You can find Sarah here.


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