Friday, November 19, 2010

When Heavy Equipment Working next to the Stream is a GOOD Thing

The Adopt-A-Stream Foundation has been back on the banks of Little Swamp Creek, working all week long in an area behind our property that has been overwhelmed by reed canary grass.  The LEAF School from Edmonds Community College will be spending the day today working with AASF to plant native wetland plants in the prepared area.

Here's the actual plan - 

This section of the stream has been completely overgrown with reed canary grass and blackberries.  The grass is so thick and tall that in the summer it was almost impossible to even see the stream because the grass was practically creating a tunnel over it.  By this time of year the grass has fallen down enough that it is possible to walk through there again and see the stream- 


These are shots looking south and north in the section that will be replanted today - 


The plan is to shade out the canary grass by thickly planting 21 hummocks with native vegetation (the hummocks are the rectangles with the diamond pattern in the plans above).  In addition, 660 square feet of stream bank will be planted with livestakes, and 3,900 square feet of blackberry bushes were removed to be replaced with scattered native plants.

Access to the area was much easier from our yard, so the dirt for building up the hummocks was dumped in our driveway -

and carried to the area behind our fence by wheelbarrow -

The hummocks were scraped/dug out a bit with a small excavator and this new soil was added-

Plants and livestakes are staged back there, too, ready for planting -

I was struck by the fact that this particular project includes what I think is a huge side benefit to the property owner.  When we first moved into the neighborhood a dozen years ago our neighbor behind us was easily able to walk down to the stream.  But over the past several years the blackberry bushes have grown up and made an impossible barrier for him.  It is fabulous that he will be able to get down there and enjoy checking out the stream again.  We appreciate that he was willing to work with the Adopt-a-Stream Foundation to continue to restore the banks of Little Swamp Creek, and I'm glad he benefits from allowing them the access!

1 comment:

  1. Thank you Admans for letting us take over your yard last week! Letting us stage materials at your house made the project SO much easier for us.
    -The Adopt A Stream Staff