22 October: Victorian Plantations Corporation (VPC) writes to Agricultural and Domestic Chemicals Review Committee (ADCRC) requesting approval for aerial spraying of Velpar L (hexazinone preparation) on pines in Creswick (LEGL 93-39/1) and Shepherds Flat (Ballarat) (LEGL 93-32) pine plantations in November/December in accordance with Code of Practice.
28 October: ADCRC approves spraying.
2 November: VPC distributes letter to residents between Creswick East and Springmount informing them amongst other things that;
“. . . Aerial application will commence in early November, 1993 and should be completed in one day, depending on weather.
4 November: VPC sends almost identical letter (as above) to Shire of Creswick.
15 November: Field Air* (Ballarat) sprays 70 hectares of the Shepherds Flat pine plantation (located about 4km south east of the village of Durham Lead) with Velpar L (wind SE, 12 knots). Three/Four? spraying flights were necessary. Approximately 912 litres of Velpar (Hexazinone), 1520 litres of Ulvapron and 2128 litres of water were sprayed. (*Field Air act as agents for Air Tractor Australia – owned by Air Tractor (Olney, Texas)).
16 November: Field Air (Benalla) sprays 30 hectares in one aircraft trip at Creswick (plantation known as Sawpit Gully) with Velpar L (wind NE, 4 knots). VPC advises DCNR (Department of Conservation and Natural Resources) of aerial spraying near Creswick nursery that day. Nursery staff observe plane flying low over nursery. DCNR staff ask what is being sprayed. VPC advises it is Velpar L. – 12 litres of Velpar, 20 litres of Ulvapron (an anti-evaporant petroleum based compound) and 28 litres of water, total 60 litres per hectare. Droplet size was 250-300 microns (a relatively large droplet size which are normally 100 microns). Aircraft in question had an 1800 litre tank. Height of the aircraft was 1 to 2 metres above canopy – 3 metres above the ground.
End November/early December: DCNR Creswick nursery staff observe yellow blotching on nursery stock and amenity plants at nursery. Damaged tubestock thrown out.