HELMS FORESTRY RESERVE

 

 

Helms Forestry Reserve - Western Australia

 

GPS 33 43 27 S 121 49 06 E

 

 

 

 

Toilets available Tables and / or seats and / or shelters provided Pets prohibited Walk trails

 

 

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Helms Arboretum is located north of Esperance a few kilometres south of Gibson.

The arboretum is named after a respected forester called Andy Helms who was the manager of Esperance Pine Forests Ltd. He was involved in attempts to establish the first commercial tree growing venture in the area. Initial trials were not successful due to poor soils, the wrong types of pine and competition from weeds.

It took some time for the right combination of trees and fertilizers to be developed but this led to broader farming success in the area.

There are 120 plots of different species of trees in the reserve. First plantings date back to 1928. Plantings of different types of trees were made to determine their usefulness in the Esperance area.

There is a picnic area at the western end of the Arboretum where you will find a toilet and seats, tables and shelter.

The arboretum is just part of a much larger forestry reserve that covers 4000 ha. Apart from the planted plots, there is a large intact area of sandplain heath that houses several threatened plant species and is also home to native animals such as the honey possum.

A large percentage of the heathlands are what is known as Kwongan heath. It might not appear so at first glance but this is one of the most diverse areas of plant species on the planet.

70% of the more than 8,000 plant species of the south-west can be found here, 45 of these species are listed as threatened.

Of course the diversity of plants is reflected in a corresponding diversity of animal life. There are 15 species of animals living in Kwongan heath that are listed as threatened.

Fires, pets and quad bikes are not allowed in the reserve.

 

 

 

Best time to visit:

Jan

Feb

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Dec

 

 

 

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