The Southern Grass Tree

Anyone who has visited Deep Creek Conservation Park would know

that it is synonymous with the Southern Grass Tree (Xanthorrehoea Australis)

The District Council of Yankalilla has used it as its logo for many years.

But did you know that these grass trees are slow growing and long lived with

some estimated to be 450 years old.


Yaccas in Stringybark Forest

A feast of Yaccas in the Stringybark Forest

  In fact, the rough trunk only develops after many

years of growth.  Its typical black appearance is the result of exposure to bushfires over decades.

The reason the tree usually survives a fire is that its living growth-point

is buried underground, protected by a tightly packed leaf base.


Growth rates, although hard to quantify, have been estimated at between 1-3 cm per year.

Flowering takes several years and does not happen annually.

However, after bushfires up to 80% of grass trees will flower producing

a single spear-like cream coloured stem that can reach up to 3m in height.


Flowering Yaccas at Cobbler Hill with Kangaroo Island in the background

Flowering Yaccas at Cobbler Hill with Kangaroo Island in the background

The Southern grasstree was an important plant for Aborigines, both as a source

of food and drink as well as for fibre and materials for tool and weapon construction.

The flowering stem, when soaked in water, produces a sweet drink

while it also releases a resin that was used as a glue when making tools.

Stems could also be used as part of a spear or as a base for fire making

implements and the tough seed pods were used as cutting implements.


The distinctive leaves of grass trees are captivating

The distinctive leaves of grass trees are captivating


European settlers used the resin to produce a lacquer for furniture.

Grass trees are also known as ‘yacca’, which is likely derived from

a South Australian Aboriginal language, mostly likely Kaurna.

Today you can marvel at the majesty of these great survivors

from the comfort of your patio at the Ridgetop Retreats.


Xanthorrehoea at Ridgetop Retreats

Watch the leaves of the Yacca dance to the tune of the wind from your patio

Art in the Park

Nature and art - a perfect combination

Nature and art – a perfect combination


If you‘ve quietly held a secret ambition to try your hand at painting but

lacked the confidence to take those first steps here’s a great opportunity.

Not only does Deep Creek Conservation Park provide a wealth of scenic

inspiration but we have now also secured the services of Gilbert Dashorst.



Gilbert Dashorst at work

Gilbert Dashorst at work


Gilbert was South Australia’s Botanical Illustrator at the State Herbarium

for more than 30 years.

 In addition to his expertise in this highly intricate filed Gilbert’s work also

encompasses other media such as charcoal, pencil, water colours acrylics and gouache.

Come and join on an artistic exploration during the months of March and April.


Drawing inspiration from nature

Drawing inspiration from nature


The workshop will run over 3 hours at a location in Deep Creek

best suited to the conditions and desires that prevail on the day.

Gilbert will pass on his skills to you during a number of different

art adventure experiences, showing you and helping you produce

some beautiful artwork of either plants and/or other natural

wonders that you may find in Deep Creek.



Interpreting what you see - this could be you

Beats work any day

Priced at $150 per person this workshop includes all materials.

At the end of the session you can take home a piece of personal hand drawn,

painted, sketched or illustrated work of art, ready to be framed and hung.

Discounts are available for group bookings of 4 or more.

For further information contact:

Gilbert Dashorst at or Mob: 0432 372 235.



Coastal bike ride for the family

View from Carrackalinga Point

Enjoy the views all the way back to Rapid Bay


Many of our guests are familiar with the stunning scenery that Deep Creek

Conservation Park has to offer but did you know that there is a wealth of other

attractions to explore in our district?  The coastline along the Southern tip of the

Fleurieu Peninsula is a treasure trove of wonderful scenery and photo opportunities.

Today the focus is on a walk/bike trail that runs from the foreshore carpark at Normanville

to North Bay at Carrickalinga. This journey is an easy 20 minutes each way by bike.


Normanville foreshore

Normanville foreshore


Starting at the Normanville Beach carpark follow Jetty Road

till the end and turn left on to Carrackalinga Road.

There is a dedicated shared bike/footpath separate from the main

road that runs all the way to Carrackalinga.


Carrackalinga Bike Ride

The path is separated from road traffic for most of the way.


Once you cross Carrackalinga Creek turn left on to Riverview Drive

which then turns in to Gold Coast Drive.  As the road turns back towards Bennett Street

you will again see a shared pathway on your left for pedestrians and cyclists only.

Follow this past Haycock Point lookout all the way to Carrackalinga Point

lookout (the half way mark).  Take a moment to savour the views all the way back to Rapid Bay.

The return journey is sweetened by the thought of refreshments at the Normanville Beach Cafe.


Normanville Beach Cafe

Reward yourself at journey’s end at the Normanville Beach Cafe


If you would like a Google map click on the link here here for more detail.




Summer offer for our subscribers

Blowhole beach

The turquoise waters of Blowhole beach are irresistible

We know from past experience that our readers love special offers

and so we are happy to announce one for this summer.

Between 15 January and 28 February 2018 anyone staying 3 nights with us

will receive the 4th night free of charge.  This is a great opportunity

to extend that summer break at no additional cost.

To take advantage of this offer bookings must be made directly with us by telephone only.

To secure your preferred dates call us on Tel 8598 4169 and we will check for availability.

Go on, explore those beaches both in and near Deep Creek

Conservation Park you’ve always wanted to visit but never had the time to.



Second Valley Beach

Relax on Second Valley Beach, voted best beach in SA.

Time for a cruise to Yankalilla

One of many hot rods on display at the Yankalilla Cruise


Feeling like a nostalgic trip down memory lane or perhaps you just love

the look of classic cars?  Well on Saturday 19 November 2017 it is the 10th

Anniversary of the Yankalilla Cruise.  This annual event starts at Castle Plaza,

Edwardstown and culminates at the Yankalilla Memorial Oval.


Yankalilla Cruise at Memorial Oval

Cars gather for the annual Yankalilla Cruise at Memorial Park, Yankalilla.


It is a great opportunity to get a closer look at custom and classic cars

as well as hot rods from a bygone era.

There is also plenty of entertainment including live music with a dance floor,

bar, and food facilities as well as a free bouncy castle.

Entry fee is $15 per vehicle or $5 walk in with children under 14 free.

The cruise arrives at the Yankalilla Oval at approximately 11.15am

with other vehicles on display at the Oval from 10 am onwards.



2017 Yankalilla Cruise

2017 Yankalilla Cruise event details