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Guided Tour of Boomaroo Nurseries, Southbrook – Monday 4 September 2023

We had another good roll up of thirty-four (34) for this event – Thirty-seven for lunch which included three members Phil Cash, Neville Sarquis & Pat McNamee who were unable to join us for the event – Welcome Phil, Neville & Pat.

Our first stop of the day was Southbrook Bi-Centennial Park for smoko where we were welcomed with a short shower of rain, but fortunately there was sufficient shelter in the park to keep us all dry.

Following Smoko, we travelled onto Boomaroo Nurseries where we were met & welcomed by Damian Hughes (Production Manager) & Benita his assistant. Damian then provided us with an overview of the nursery’s history along with a guided tour of all operations.

I found Damian’s talk & guided tour very interesting & informative, & some of the things I learned are as follows –

  • Boomaroo Nurseries Site was originally a dairy farm.
  • The nursery has only been in operation (at this site) for three & a half years & employs a staff of eighteen.
  • The company has invested twenty-eight million dollars into this site to date & is expanding.
  • The total operation is fully automated viz.
    • Weather, humidity & temperature is regulated – roofs & walls open & close as required.
    • Water, fertiliser & pest control – programmed to suit the time of year e.g., summer more water & winter less water etc.
    • Benches are all on conveyors that move as required.
    • Mowers trim the tops of plants whilst they are on the benches.
  • The growth period for most seeds is around five to six weeks on site.
  • They use underground water on site & have sufficient water reserves along with licenses to cater for their planned expansion.
  • Boomaroo Nurseries main market is Qld. & NSW. – they do not export overseas.

Following our guided tour we travelled back to the Downs Hotel, Drayton where Phil, Neville & Pat joined us for lunch.

Following lunch, members birthdays falling in September were acknowledged & celebrated in our usual manner viz. Brian Douglas, Noel Grant, Bryan Hunt, John Mullen, Pat O’Dea, Don Stansbie, Allan Stenzel, Ray Wells & Greg Whitley.

Special thanks to all who contributed to making this another safe & enjoyable event for all attendees, including Warwick Dingle & Ian Willert (Qld Business Manager – Boomaroo) for organising this event; Damian Hughes (Site Production Manager – Boomaroo) supported by his assistant Benita for their warm welcome & very interesting & informative guided tour; Michael Bourke & Russell Mauch for looking after our finances & name badges including receipting & banking of surplus cash; Warwick Dingle for ensuring we were all accounted for before our coach departed again after each stop; Peter Thompson for ensuring we got on & off the coach safely at each stop; Ron Lewis & Lindsay Reis for looking after our hydration needs; Bob Whittaker & Tony Wind for their usual joint gig as our first aid officers; Jan Neal for making our birthday cake; Montana & staff at the Downs Hotel for our great lunch; & finally our coach driver Nick Peters for transporting us to & from Southbrook safely.

To conclude, based on the feedback I have received I can safely say that this event was enjoyed by all attendees.

Dick 17th September 2023

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