holyoutlaw: (me meh)

About ten volunteers from Youth Environmental Awareness joined Golden Gardens forest stewards and other volunteers for a day of ivy removal and mulching. They worked really hard, trucking full wheelbarrows of mulch down a long staircase and clearing several hundred feet of ivy. They also had a great time and brought plenty of snacks (always important!) and water.

The weather cooperated, with a cool, foggy start to the day. The work warmed us up pretty quickly, and by the time the work party was over the sun was beginning to peek through the fog leading to a nicely sunny afternoon.

Doug Gresham, forest steward for Golden Gardens, begins the work party with a welcoming talk, explaining some of the whys and wherefores of urban forest restoration.

Doug Gresham, forest steward for Golden Gardens, begins the work party with a welcoming talk, explaining some of the whys and wherefores of urban forest restoration.

After the welcoming talk, a bit of goofing around while everyone gets gloves and signs in.

After the welcoming talk, a bit of goofing around while everyone gets gloves and signs in.

More important preliminaries: Tool safety and work demonstration.

More important preliminaries: Tool safety and work demonstration.

After that last bit of preliminary, we got to work, and I was too busy to take any pictures. Plants installed last month were mulched, and a long section was cleared of ivy and other invasive plants (along the way, finding a couple buckets worth of trash). There was even a break for water and snacks, but everyone got back to work shortly. Overall, we had a great time, and were impressed by how much work was accomplished.

 

The end of the day, and still smiling. Making sure everyone took some water home.

The end of the day, and still smiling. Making sure everyone took some water home.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Join Friends of North Beach Park for some post-Thanksgiving green calories on Saturday, November 28, 2015. We’ll meet at the main entrance to the park, 24th Ave and 90th St. NW. The work party will run from 9 a.m. to noon, rain or shine.

We’ll be planting in different areas in the main body of the park. The plants we have range from small groundcover to giant conifers (well, they will be giant conifers in a couple decades). We will also transport mulch down to the sites using wheelbarrows and buckets.

Low Oregon-grape (Mahonia nervosa), salal (Gaultheria shallon), wild ginger (Asarum caudatum), and Pacific bleeding heart (Dicentra formosa).

Low Oregon-grape (Mahonia nervosa), salal (Gaultheria shallon), wild ginger (Asarum caudatum), and Pacific bleeding heart (Dicentra formosa).

Here is a complete list:

Genus Species
Common Name
Number
Abies grandis grand fir
10
Acer macrophyllum bigleaf maple
10
Amelanchier alnifolia serviceberry
9
Asarum caudatum wild ginger
20
Blechnum spicant deer fern
30
Dicentra formosa Pacific bleeding heart
20
Gaultheria shallon salal
25
Juncus acuminatus tapertip rush
25
Myrica californica Pacific wax myrtle
15
Petasites frigidus coltsfoot
10
Prunus emarginata var. mollis bitter cherry
10
Tiarella trifoliata threeleaf foamflower
20
   
204

We’ll provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Please wear weather appropriate layers that can get dirty. Rain gear will be helpful; expect late-November weather, whatever that means these days. Even in cool weather, it’s a good idea to bring some water and a snack.

Please sign up in advance at the Green Seattle Partnership Cedar website so we know you’re coming.

All ages are welcome; volunteers under 18 must sign and bring a waiver (link next to the sign-up form). The #48 and #40 buses stop a few blocks south of the park; check Metro for details. Parking is available on 90th St. east of 24th Ave.

Can’t make the work party? Help out the Green Seattle Partnership by taking the 20 Year Plan Update Community Survey. In order to guide the update to the GSP 20 Year Strategic Plan, we have a NEW survey that is targeted towards regular volunteers and/or non-volunteers. This survey is looking to gather information on how GSP can support volunteerism citywide.

Here is some more on the Green Seattle 10 Year Update.

And as always, you can support Friends of North Beach Park by making a directed donation to the Seattle Parks Foundation.

All money donated will be used to fund the restoration efforts of North Beach Park.

If you have any questions about the work party or Friends of North Beach Park, feel free to write lukemcguff@yahoo.com.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

It was rainy for the 10th annual Green Seattle Day, but this was hardly the worst weather I’ve experienced. There were about 16 events all over the city; I went to St. Mark’s Greenbelt. We had 300 plants to put in and ably met the task. There are five forest stewards at St. Mark’s, some of whom have been working there as long as ten years, some only a couple.

Low Oregon grape, sword fern, salal, and some other plants ready to be installed.

Low Oregon grape, sword fern, salal, and some other plants ready to be installed.

There was a good crowd of people, about 25 to start with.

Getting to work

Getting to work

The rain never got too hard to be soaking, but it did give all the plants a nice thorough drink as we planted them. We installed Douglas and grand fir, tall and low Oregon-grape, sword and deer fern, nootka and bald hip rose, cascara, and a few others. In preparation for the planting, invasives had been removed over the summer and the work area covered in burlap. When my coworker pulled the burlap aside once, we found two different kinds of insect eggs, I have no idea what kind.

Two kinds of insect eggs.

Two kinds of insect eggs.

Getting all the plants in took less than the allotted time. A number of people took off before we had the chance for a group photo, but here are the stalwarts.

About half the workers.

About half the workers.

The fun wasn’t over yet, though, as we set to removing ivy that had grown up into the canopy of a few nearby trees.

They could sure use it.

They could sure use it.

Attacking the problem.

Attacking the problem.

Result!

Result!

Two important clarifications: (a) The two people in the second-to-last photograph were not the only ones who worked. (b) There were several more trees worked on than in this photo.

By this time, almost everyone but the forest stewards and four or five die-hard volunteers had left. There was still the all-important “must be present to win” raffle. I even think it went to the hardest-working volunteer.

Angel, with the backpack donated by REI.

Angel, with the backpack donated by REI.

One thing I like to do when volunteering at Green Seattle Day or Duwamish Alive, or any other large planting effort, is think about all the people all over the area (the Green/Duwamish watershed or the city of Seattle) who are pitching in to help make the future a little better, and how all our work connects together.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Well, it was another great work party with the Friends of North Beach Park, accompanied by a number of UW students in the ESRM 100 class (Environmental Science and Resource Management). We all did a lot of great work, accomplishing a lot in a short time (and finishing up just as the sprinkles started).

An important beginning to a successful work party: Make sure everyone is registered!

An important beginning to a successful work party: Make sure everyone is registered!

Original plans — to transplant some wetland trees and shrubs from a nearby parking strip — had to be put on hold because the plants were still too vigorous, due to the warm, dry fall. So we constructed some trailside erosion control instead, and cleaned up an area where a tree had fallen last winter.

I got so excited, in fact, that a lot of the pictures I took were blurry. Oh well.

The trailside erosion control was done near the entrance to the park, in an area called the Headwaters Bowl. There are places where the water runs off the side of the trail down the slope, and is starting to form dips in the trailside down to the slope.

We brought a lot of fallen tree branches up from a lower slope, cut them to size, and laid them alongside the trail.

The cut branches were laid along side the trail in semi-neat rows. Stakes were put in on the slope-side of the branch piles.

The cut branches were laid along side the trail in semi-neat rows. Stakes were put in on the slope-side of the branch piles.

After the branches were in place, we staked them for support and added wattles (burlap sacks filled with mulch) to help slow down the water.

Bagging mulch to make wattles.

Bagging mulch to make wattles.

The work stretched for a couple hundred feet along the trail. Notice also the raking that happened on the trail — it’s a good idea to keep organic matter off a trail if possible.

Wattles alongside the trail.

Wattles alongside the trail.

We were able to split into two work groups. The second group cleared the area where a large maple had fallen last winter, cutting the branches up into brush, and setting some aside to be used as ivy platform logs. (Unfortunately, those were some of the blurry pictures.)

Here is the group photo of all the hard workers.

All the participants at the Friends of North Beach Park work party.

All the participants at the Friends of North Beach Park work party.


Thank you everyone for your hard work!

The students were evenly split between being from China and South Korea. Their majors included biology, math, economics, and sociology.

I thought it would be interesting to think about how these various majors could find application in ecological restoration. Biology is easy, of course: one can look very specifically at, say, how different species of mycorrhizae affect the nitrogen-fixing root nodules of alder trees, or the interaction of plant communities at the landscape level. For economics, a lot of people are looking into how to quantify “ecological services” — how can we calculate the amount of stormwater a healthy urban forest absorbs, and how much does that save us in terms of water processing or pollution of our larger bodies of water? How do we calculate the value of volunteerism? Sociologists look at how and why people volunteer, how we can attract more volunteers, and so on. I don’t know of anyone doing research in mathematics applied to ecological restoration, but math is certainly a tool used throughout a restoration project, whether calculating the stresses on a slope, the flow through a stream, or how to achieve specific planting densities in particular areas.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

It’s coming up soon! Here are the details:

The June work party of Friends of North Beach Park will happen on Saturday, June 27, 2015. The location will be the South Plateau, at 88th St. and 27th Ave NW. The work party will run from 9 a.m. to noon. Your host will be Drexie Malone.

We’ll be providing after care to the native plants reintroduced to the South Plateau in the last couple years. This will include removing competing plants that can hinder their growth or completely choke them out.

We’ll provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Please wear weather appropriate layers than can get dirty. The temperature is currently forecast to be in the upper 80s, so please be sure to bring plenty of cold water and take frequent rest breaks. It would help to drink some extra water before heading to the park, as well as bringing extra with you. Because of the presence of stinging nettle, long-sleeved t-shirts and long pants are recommended. Having said all that, the South Plateau is very shady and the work planned is not very strenuous.

To get to the South Plateau: From the intersection of 24th Ave NW and NW 85th St., head west on 85th St (Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church will be on your right). At the intersection of 26th Ave and 85th St., turn right (North). Drive north on 26th Ave. for a long block until the intersection with 88th St., which will be on your left. Turn left onto 88th St. and look for parking. The entrance to the South Plateau is about half a block north on 27th Ave. The #48 bus line stops at 85th and 26th; the #40 bus line stops at 85th and 24th. Check http://metro.kingcounty.gov/#plan-a-trip for exact details.

If you have any questions about the work party or Friends of North Beach Park, feel free to write lukemcguff@yahoo.com for further information.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

We’ve set up the first batch of work parties at North Beach Park — come join us for invasive removal, planting, meeting people and sharing good work.

All events start at 9 a.m. and run until about noon, rain or shine. All events are on the fourth Saturday of the month, with specific dates below. Please sign up in advance so we know you’re coming!

We welcome all ages, but children must be accompanied by an adult. High-school aged people should have a Youth Waiver Form signed when they arrive. The form is on the sidebar of the event page.

Please wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and closed-toe shoes that can stand up to a little mud. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and snacks as you need them, but there are no facilities at the park.

For events in the main body of the park, parking is available on 90th St. east of 24th Ave. Parking near the South Plateau is more limited, as the nearest public streets are residential. The #40 and #48 buses stop within a couple blocks of the park. Check Metro Trip Planner for details.

Alright! Now onto the event-specific information:

South Plateau Planting Work Party
January 24, 2015

This is the third of four planting parties in North Beach Park during this planting season. We’ll be installing upland trees and shrubs in the South Plateau area of the park. The entrance is located at 27th Ave NW and NW 88th St. If we have time or enough people, we’ll also do some invasive removal.

Directions: From the intersection of 24th Ave. and 85th St., head west to 26th Ave. Turn right onto 26th Ave. and continue north to 87th St. Turn left onto 87th St. and look for parking. The entrance to the park is a half block or so up 27th Ave., which looks like an alleyway at that point. The South Plateau is below street grade, but the work party should be easily visible.

Wetland Trees and Shrubs
February 28, 2015

Join us for the final planting work party of the planting season! We’ll be planting trees and shrubs appropriate for wetlands and streambanks. They’ll add a nice mid-canopy layer to the wetland stretches of the park. These trees and shrubs were purchased as part of a stewardship grant from the Washington Native Plant Society.

Spring is Bustin’ out all over
March 28, 2015

March is the start of the really pretty days for North Beach Park. Several herbaceous plants and many shrubs are already in bloom and all the deciduous plants are leafing out. If you visit the park sometime when no one else is there, you might be surprised at the amount of bird song you can hear. (During a work party, it might be too noisy to hear much.)

April Work Party
April 25, 2015

This is the last work party of the winter and spring series. Just about everything that can be in bloom will be at this point, and everything is fully leafed out. If the weather is gorgeous, but you can’t quite clear your schedule to get out of the city, come join us in the woods.

That’s it! We take a break in May for a couple reasons. The first is that it’s too close to Memorial Day weekend, and everybody has more fun things to do (I mean, WE think pulling ivy in the park is fun…) The second, and more important, is that it’s the height of nesting season, and we don’t want to disturb the ground and shrub nesting birds that make North Beach Park their home.

And as ever, if you can’t attend a work party, your financial support is more than welcome. Just visit the Seattle Parks Foundation’s North Beach Park page and make a tax-deductible donation. All funds will be used for purchase of materials, supplies, and plants. Thank you in advance!

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

It’s been a busy week at North Beach Park!

It started last Sunday (16th), when Friends of North Beach Park forest steward Morry (who also works at Llandover Woods) arranged for the forest steward from Llandover, Glenn, to bring some equipment to North Beach Park so we could shoot a video.

Drone
Here is a picture of one of the drones being stabilized before takeoff.

And here is the resultant video:

NorthBeachNovember1080 from Glenn Austin on Vimeo.

I recommend full screen, of course. And turn off any other music so you can hear the wonderful guitar piece Glenn selected for the video.

Making the video was fun, and the results certainly can’t be beat. Now I want to do one every season — easy for me to say, of course, I don’t have to do any of the work. ;> (There are more photos on Flickr.)

Here is a video Glenn made of Llandover Woods.

On Monday, Drexie, Tad, and Luke prepared the plants for the work party. This involved sorting, revising the planting plan, figuring out which was which and what was what, and tagging everything.

Here are Tad (left) and Drexie (center background) tagging the plants:
Tad (left) and Drexie (center background) tagging plants

We took the plants to North Beach and left them in a staging area down the trail. We also saw, much to our dismay, that someone — between Sunday afternoon and Monday morning — dumped at least 43 cans of paint in North Beach Park. The ones I picked up were all full. The Ballard blog posted an article about it. It’s nice to see that most of the comments are upset about the dumping.

The paint cans were pretty quickly picked up, probably Tuesday (thank you, Seattle Parks Department!). But still, considering where they were, someone went to more trouble to dump them in the park than it would have taken to get rid of them legitimately. (Guess what — more photos on Flickr.)

And Saturday was our planting party. In addition to the plants from the Green Seattle Partnership, we had eight Sitka Spruce and one Western Red Cedar provided by a neighbor.

We had help from the iCARE students from North Seattle College again:
iCARE

And we were also joined by students from Circle K International from the UW:
Circle K International

We planted more than 100 plants, and this included a fair amount of prep work for some of the areas. It was a very successful work party.
Plants ready for installation

Our next work party won’t be until January. But there are still work parties at Golden Gardens, Carkeek Park, and Llandover Woods.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Saturday, September 27th was a beautiful day for a work party — and a good time was had by all!

Friends of North Beach park welcomed 16 students from Seattle Pacific University as part of their Cityquest program: Incoming freshman students are sent to locations all over Seattle for a little community service.

Two forest stewards had made elaborate plans for the group, and we were able to keep them busy for all four hours of the work party (FoNBP events are usually three hours). We worked on the South Plateau, which is a great place for a larger work party and needs a lot of attention.

Our plan was to remove as much of the nipplewort (Lapsana communis) and herb robert (Geranium robertianum) as possible. It really got out of hand this year, and unfortunately, the nipplewort had already set seed. It’s normally very easy to remove — it’s a shallow-rooted annual, so just grasp at the base, lift, knock off the dirt, and drop it. But the seed set meant we had to remove it. I’m sure a lot of seeds got knocked off in the process, but it was still better than leaving it there. The herb robert is also easy to remove, but it needs constant attention. It can flower any time of the year, greatly outcompetes native groundcover, and even poisons the soil against other plants. It’s other common name is “stinky bob,” and it has a pungent smell when uprooted.

Our plan was to put down lots of burlap and mulch once the herb robert and nipplewort had been removed. To which end, we had a truck full of burlap.
Tools and burlap

And a big pile of burlap and a lotta buckets!
Assemblage

In fact, about lunchtime we went back and got more burlap. And we had a group of students moving mulch from another location, adding it to the pile above pretty much all day (okay, we fell a little short on the wheelbarrows).

Speaking of lunchtime, it gave us all a chance to sit down and for the students to get acquainted with each other a bit.
Lunch

After lunch, it was back to the work: removing nipplewort and herb robert, putting mulch around already-installed plants, and building some ivy platforms.

Here is a group of volunteers in the basin of the South Plateau. When residents of Labateyah began working in the South Plateau in 2012, this was an impenetrable mass of blackberry and ivy that one forest steward thought it would take years to clear.
The South Plateau

By the end of the day, we were definitely dragging. But we had enough energy to smile for a group photograph.
The valiant crew!
Morry (in the back left), Tad (on the right, in a white hat) and Wenny (first row right, in the fuschia hoodie) were from Friends of North Beach Park. Everyone else is form SPU!

Thank you, SPU and Cityquest! We look forward to hosting you again next year.

(As usual, there are some more photos on Flickr.)

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Welcome fall to North Beach Park! Some of the leaves are already turning and dropping. Now is the time we prepare for the planting parties in October and November.

Saturday, September 27: Work party at the South Plateau. Please note the time and location!

This work party will happen from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (different time!) at the South Plateau, located at NW 88th St. and 27th Ave. NW (different location!).

Directions: To get to the South Plateau from the intersection of NW 85th St. and 24th Ave. NW:

  • Head west on NW 85th St. two blocks.
  • Turn north (right) onto 26th Ave.
  • Drive north on 26th Ave. to where it ends at 88th St.
  • Turn right (west) onto 88th St. and look for parking. PARKING MIGHT BE LIMITED.
  • The entrance to the park is about half a block north.

This is a special work party where we’ll be joined by students from Seattle Pacific University and their CityQuest Program. There will be about twenty students, so we should get a lot done.

We will weed, mulch, and prepare the site for January planting. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. We recommend you wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and closed shoes. Bring water or a snack if you need them. We’ll take a lunch break which will provide some socializing time.

Please register here so we know you’re coming.

Save the date for these upcoming work parties: October 25 and November 22 (in the main body of the park) and January 24, 2015, once again in the South Plateau (for planting). All work parties are on the 4th Saturday, and will run from 9 a.m. to 12 noon.

Blog posts. Every Monday, Nature Intrudes features another excerpt from the Restoration Management Plan for North Beach Park. The first two posts look at the history of the park, and show more than you might have thought was there.

History of North Beach Park.

History of the restoration efforts.

(Feel free to look at other posts on Nature Intrudes, of course!)

As always, if you don’t have the time to join us for a work party, you can support Friends of North Beach Park by making a directed donation to the Seattle Parks Foundation. All money donated will be used to fund the restoration efforts of North Beach Park.

That’s all for now, but we hope to see you in the woods soon!

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Two reports this week! Forgot to download the Monday pictures so here they are now.

On Monday we explored two habitat management units that are at the far northern end of the park, and consequently not very well explored. We also got a good estimate of canopy cover and of that what was conifer and what deciduous.

On the way there, though, we saw that someone had made a tasty snack of a tree planted last spring:
Herbivory

It’s the clean, angular cut that is a sign of mountain beaver (which don’t live on mountains and aren’t beavers). The other trees planted at the same time were doing well, so maybe it wasn’t that tasty after all.

The areas we were exploring were the 92nd St. Wetlands and Fletcher’s Slope, which you can see on the map below:

Source: Green Seattle Partnership Reference map on ArcGIS.com

Source: Green Seattle Partnership Reference map on ArcGIS.com


(Okay, that’s a little big, but the other size the software offered was too small.)

The green lines are the park boundaries, and the red lines are the HMU boundaries. The short, horizontal red line just below the center of the picture is a stream crossing. The social trail ends just north of there, but the park continues on for another couple hundred feet. That’s what we were exploring Monday.

Fletcher's Slope platform
We saw this platform — what is it? Sleeping platform? Somebody’s home? Camping spot for kid’s sleep out? Whoever built it did a good job.

The reason for the exploration was to get some missing information for the MEH project and restoration management plan. We found out what we needed to know. But let’s skip ahead to Saturday because –

Coyote!
Coyote!

You can see it above, in the middle of the image, but quite a ways from me. Looking very intently into the park — “I just want to go home after a night of stealing cat food.” It very patiently waited while I took a couple pictures. Here’s the other one.

Coyote!
(I just realized I got so excited to post the coyote pictures I never processed them. Oh well.)

I was hoping to get one more, but looked down at the camera for a couple seconds and when I looked up, the coyote had vanished.

Really happy about that, I hope it eats some of the mountain beaver.

The work party today was just three people — “The few, the proud… or at least the few,” as Morry said. August work parties are usually our least-attended. If it’s good weather, everybody wants to get out of town because OMG SUMMER’S ALMOST OVER. If it’s bad weather, they want to sit inside and sulk because a possible good weekend is wasted.

In any case, we got some good work done. We revisited an area that had been cleared of a blackberry monoculture in the winter. Well, really clearing the blackberry monoculture and then letter everything sit for a couple months sharply increased the diversity. Unfortunately, it was all invasives or undesired native plants. But we worked among the weeds and brought down four wheelbarrows of mulch, so we did some good.

Here is an “after” picture:
"After" Picture

The next work party will by Saturday, September 27. It’s at a different location, the South Plateau, and a different time, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. We’ll be joined by students from Seattle Pacific University on their CityQuest program. Hope you can join us!

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Apologies for the short notice, but the time for the August work party is already upon us.

The August work party is this Saturday, August 23, from 9 a.m. to Noon. We’ll work in an area that was cleared last winter, removing any weeds that have returned, mulching, and getting ready for the planting that will happen in November.

Please join us, the work is always fun and it’s great to see the improvements in this hidden little park.

Wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and sturdy, closed shoes. Even if it’s warm, long sleeves will help protect a little against nettles and blackberries. We’ll provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and a snack if you need them, but there are no facilities at the park.

Parking is available on 90th St. east of 24th, and on 24th north of 90th. The #61 bus runs past the park, and the #s 48 and 40 stop a few blocks away. Check Metro for details.

Please register so we can make our plans. And, as always, if you can’t attend a work party, please consider making a donation to the Seattle Parks Foundation. You’ll get a tax deduction for the donation, and all funds will be spent on restoration of the park. Click here to support North Beach Park.

Our September work party will happen on the 4th Saturday as usual (the 27th), but will be at a different time and location. We’ll be meeting at the South Plateau, at 27th Ave. and 88th St., and students from Seattle Pacific University on CityQuest will be joining us. The work party will be from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and have a lunch break.

Thank you, and we hope you’re enjoying your summer!

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Eight friends of North Beach Park gathered Saturday (6/28) morning to help restore this neighborhood pocket of our urban forest. This month, we concentrated on aftercare, weeding and watering plants that had been planted in the last year or two. Generally, restoration plants are left to sink or swim on their own. But even a little water in their first year or two can be very helpful in getting them fully established to survive the summer droughts.

Weeding, watering, and after care

We concentrated on the rim of the park, along 24th Ave., and along the upland side of the first couple hundred feet of the main trail.

Salal (Gaultheria shallon)
This salal is looking pretty good. Salal takes a while to establish, but can really take off after a few years. The fact that it has flowers is a good sign.

Overall, it was a pretty easy going work party. The people who brought wheelbarrows of water up from the stream, or the people who brought the tires up from the wetlands, might disagree with me. ;> But I do know a good time was had by all.

As always, there are a few more photos on Flickr.

***

There is a lot happening in the park this summer, restoration-wise. We’ve already had a visit from SPU, a drainage specialist and a wetland scientist, to talk about our wetlands and what we can do (they were favorably impressed, and made some good suggestions).

Monday, June 30, we’re going to do a cross-gradient transect of the park, examining plant life and restoration issues in detail along a nearly 700 foot line. We’ll be working with Stewart Wechsler.

In early July, we’ll have a visit with a person from King Conservation District, who will help us plan some outreach and financing (through grants) larger projects in the park.

And in July and August, I (Luke) will be working on a restoration management plan for the park. A lot of the information provided by the site reviews and transect will be used in the management plan.

Our next work party is July 26th, 9 a.m. to noon. We’ll meet at the main entrance to the park, 90th St. and 24th Ave NW. Wear weather-appropriate layers and sturdy shoes that can get dirty, bring water or a snack if you need it. We’ll provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Join us and find out how much fun it is to help restore our forested parks.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

This is a longer than usual post this time because there is so much to catch up on! But we start with the important bit: The work party announcement.

Saturday, June 28th, 9 a.m.: Welcome the early days of summer to North Beach Park at our June work party. Because the spring was relatively dry, we’re going to concentrate on after care for some of the newer plants in the upland areas. That means we’ll be getting buckets of water from the stream (carefully) and watering plants along the rim and main trail. A great way toget some exercise in! (Unless it’s raining, then we’ll do something else.) Please sign up on Cedar so we can make our plans.

We meet, rain or shine, at the main entrance to the park, 24th Ave and 90th St NW. Wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and sturdy shoes or mud boots. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and a snack as you need them but there are no facilities at the park. All ages and skill levels are welcome, but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Parking is on 90th St., east of 24th Ave. The #61 bus stops across the street from the park, and the #40 and #48 stop at 85th and 24th; check Metro for details.

Save the date for upcoming workparties: July 26th, August 23rd, and September 27th. All workparties are 9 a.m. to 12 noon and meet at the main entrance to the park (90th and 24th).

Saturday, June 14th, 10 a.m.: Join Groundswell NW next week for the Ballard Open Space Discovery Day in Ballard Commons Park (57th and 22nd). Groundswell did an open space inventory for Ballard in 1996 and used that information to create many parks. The needs of Ballard have changed, and what we consider open space has changed as well. Friends of North Beach Park will be working with Groundswell NW in the area between 24th and 32nd Ave., and from 85th St. north to 100th St. We know there is a lot of open space that could be brought forward into better public use. Find out more Or take the open space survey.

North Beach Park News: Friends of North Beach Park was recently awarded a $500 stewardship grant from the Washington Native Plant Society. We’ll use this money to improve our wetland plantings. We’d like to thank the members of the Washington Native Plant Society – Central Puget Sound Chapter for their role in making this grant possible. The plants will be installed starting in early fall.

We’d like to say thank you to all the donors who made “GiveBIG” on May 6th so successful for North Beach Park. We raised more than $800, and the donors ranged from neighbors of the park to as far away as Wisconsin and Georgia. All this money will go to our restoration efforts. If you would like to donate, please see below.

A video crew from the Seattle Channel joined our April work party to document how burlap sacks are used in Seattle Parks. Most of the burlap used is donated by Distant Lands Coffee, and we’re grateful to have a good supply of free burlap to use on our hillsides. Watch the video.

Also in April, FoNBP was awarded one of the Groundswell NW 2014 “Local Hero” awards for our work in the park. We got the chance to meet the Mayor and babbled like an idiot when it came time to say thank you. But great fun was had by all.

Can’t join us for a work party? You can always support our restoration efforts by making a tax-deductible donation to the Seattle Parks Foundation. All moneys donated will be used for the restoration of North Beach Park. Please visit their website for more information.

Thank you for participating and helping in the restoration of North Beach Park.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Saturday, February 22, 9 a.m.: Show some LOVE to our favorite ravine with the Friends of North Beach Park. Join us to remove some of the bluebells that come up every spring. There are already plenty of other signs of spring: skunk cabbage is coming up, osoberry and other shrubs are starting to bud. Sign up in advance so we can make our plans.

We meet, rain or shine, at the main entrance to the park, 24th Ave and 90th St. NW. Wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and sturdy shoes or mud boots. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and a snack as you need them but there are no facilities at the park. All ages and skill levels are welcome, but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Parking is on 90th St., east of 24th Ave. The #61 bus stops across the street from the park, and the #40 and #48 stop at 85th and 24th; check Metro for details.

Save the date for upcoming work parties: March 22nd, April 26th, and June 28th. They’re also 9 a.m. to 12 noon, and meet at the main entrance to the park.

Can’t join us for a work party? Donate to the Seattle Parks Foundation to support restoration efforts at North Beach Park. Visit their website and click on the “Donate” button. Your donation is tax-deductible.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

The day started out cool and foggy, as a couple early arrivals helped us unload some late-season wetland plants.

Unloading the plants.
Drexie, Julie, Damore’ea, and Keishawn finish up unloading.

The Plants
The plants came to us in early December, and had been stored through the cold snap in the Carkeek nursery. Hopefully they’ve survived our benign neglect.

Sometimes we get ESRM 100 students at a work party. This is a class on the environment that everyone at the UW has to take. One of the assignments is to attend a 3 hour restoration work party and write a brief paper. I knew Damore’ea and Keishawn were from the UW from their address on the sign-up form, but I had no idea they were stars of the football team. Tad did, though, and was very impressed.

Football stars
John, Keishawn, Tad, Damore’ea.

Once we got all that sorted out, we set to work. First the ESRM students transported a few cubic yards of mulch into the forest, then Tad worked with them to clear some ivy and plant. As frequently happens, I didn’t get a picture of everyone working.

But here are three volunteers.
Headwaters Bowl
That’s Julie, Wenny, and Drexie (left to right) planting wetland plants into the bottom of the Headwaters Bowl. This is a permanently saturated area and everything we plant does well. So we’ll keep planting away as long as we’re able.

There were also some signs of spring in the park:

Siberian miner’s lettuce (Claytonia sibirica) is starting to sprout.
Sign of Spring
This is a very tasty little plant that goes well in salad mixes.

SIgn of Spring
The Pacific Waterleaf (Hydrophyllum tenuipes) is also starting to come back. This sprouts in the spring (I think this is a little early, because we’ve had such a relatively warm winter), blooms in early summer, and then dies back completely by August. The blooms are nothing to write home about, but the pollinators love them. I remember one summer the Waterleaf patches were humming with bees.

In addition to the planting that other people were doing, a high school student and I did some mulching.

Before
Before the mulching.

After mulching
After mulching — much better. This strip along 90th St. gets some street run off, so the mulch there will help slow it down and infiltrate the soil, rather than just run off onto the slope.

After that, it was mostly wrapping up. The last few plants were planted, Tad took the ESRM 100 students on a tour of the park, and we had time for a last group shot:

"After" group picture
Back row: John (left), Damore’ea (right). Middle, left to right: Morry, Tad, Julie. Front, left to right: Keishawn, Drexie, Wenny.

Our next work party will be February 22nd. All the usual details apply. We hope you can join us, the park should be much greener then!

There are a few more pictures on flickr.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Saturday, January 25, 9 a.m.: Work off some of that holiday “celebration” and meet new friends with the Friends of North Beach Park. Join us to begin a year of after care for all the tremendous plants North Beach Park received in 2013. We also have some wetland plants to install (this work will be muddy). Sign up in advance so we can make our plans.

We meet, rain or shine, at the main entrance to the park, 24th Ave and 90th St. NW. Wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and sturdy shoes or mud boots. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and a snack as you need them but there are no facilities at the park. All ages and skill levels are welcome, but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Parking is on 90th St., east of 24th Ave. The #61 bus stops across the street from the park, and the #40 and #48 stop at 85th and 24th; check Metro for details.

Another event of interest is the Project Heronwatch Open House sponsored by Heron Habitat Helpers. Saturday, January 18th, Discovery Park Environmental Learning Center, 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Learn about Heron Habitat Helpers and their proposed live streaming cameras. There will also be representatives of Green Seattle Partnership, Seattle Parks & Recreation, The Burke Museum, and the US Army Corps of Engineers. Chris Anderson, biologist with the WA Department of Fish and Wildlife, will give a speech at noon. We’ll be sharing a table with Groundswell NW.

Save the date for upcoming workparties: February 22nd, March 22nd, and April 26th. They’re all 9 a.m. to 12 noon, and meet at the main entrance to the park.

Can’t join us for a work party? Donate to the Seattle Parks Foundation to support restoration efforts at North Beach Park. Visit their website and click on the “Donate” button. Your donation is tax-deductible and all of the proceeds will be used to fund the restoration efforts.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

Saturday, November 23, 9 a.m. to Noon: Join us for the last work party of 2013 and a planting celebration. We have 200 trees, shrubs, ferns, and ground cover, including many plants being reintroduced to the park. These plants will provide food for insects and birds, and the different bloom times give the park a long-lasting visual texture. So come on down to build up your appetite for Thanksgiving with some green calories!

Register for this work party at the Green Seattle Partnership Cedar website. Please register in advance so we know how many shovels and buckets to provide.

We’ll meet at the main entrance to the park, 24th Ave and 90th St. NW. Wear weather-appropriate layers that can get dirty and sturdy shoes or mud boots. We’ll provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Bring water and a snack as you need them but there are no facilities at the park. All ages and skill levels are welcome, but children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Events happen rain or shine, but if it’s VERY windy, we might cancel at the last minute.

There is parking on 90th St., east of 24th Ave. The #61 bus stops across the street from the park, and the 40 and 48 stop at 85th and 24th; check Metro for details.

Can’t join us for a work party? Make a year-end donation to Seattle Parks Foundation to support restoration efforts at North Beach Park. Visit their website and click on the “Donate” button. Your tax-deductible donation will be used for tools, materials, and outreach.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (me meh)

October and November are going to be busy months in North Beach Park, as we finish up clearing invasives and head into planting season.

October 12th (Saturday) and 23rd (Wednesday): EarthCorps will remove invasive plants in preparation for November planting. EarthCorps work parties are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Visit the EarthCorps website to sign up.

October 26th (Saturday): The Friends of North Beach Park welcome Nordstrom employees for a day of planting Douglas Fir and Hemlock trees to start the planting season. The Nordstrom employees should fill out our roster. We look forward to seeing you in November.

November’s events feature planting, the reward for the invasive removal we’ve done the rest of the year.

November kicks off with GREEN SEATTLE DAY, November 2nd, a city-wide celebration at 17 parks, including Carkeek and Golden Gardens. To find out more and to sign up, visit the Green Seattle Day website.

On November 9th, EarthCorps returns to North Beach Park for their planting party. They’ve cleared quite a bit of area, help them meet their fall planting challenge and bring native plants back to North Beach Park. Again, EarthCorps events are 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

November 23rd will be the big Friends of North Beach Park planting party. We have plants to go into different environments all over the park. This will be the time to join us if you haven’t for a while. Build up that appetite for Thanksgiving! We’ll go from 9 a.m. to Noon. To sign up, visit the Green Seattle Partnership website.

All North Beach Park work parties meet at the main entrance to the park at 90th St. and 24th Ave. NW in Ballard. They also happen rain or shine, so wear weather appropriate layers that can get dirty. And wear mud boots as the park is very muddy during the fall and winter. Bring snacks and water as appropriate, but there are no facilities at the park. We provide tools, gloves, and guidance. Parking is available on 90th St., east of 24th. The #61 bus stops across the street from the park, and the 40 and 48 stop at 85th and 24th; check Metro for details.

Can’t join us for a work party? Make a year-end donation to Seattle Parks Foundation to support restoration efforts at North Beach Park and click on the “Donate” button. We use these proceeds for tools, materials, and outreach.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (picture icon iv)

April is turning out to be a special month in North Beach Park. As well as starting our third year of restoration, there are some interesting events happening. Here is a listing of the events so far.

On Sunday, April 7, join us for the Groundswell NW Annual Meeting at Sunset Hill Community Center, 3003 NW 66th St. The event will be from 6 to 8 p.m., and feature guest speakers such as Pomegranate Center Founder Milenko Matanovic. Also speaking is Groundswell NW board member Dawn Hemminger on “How to Grow a Park.” Representatives of Groundswell NW-sponsored projects (such as North Beach Park!) will be there. Bring treats to share for the potluck.

On Saturday, April 13, join EarthCorps for the first of four sponsored work parties that will happen throughout the year. We’ll be doing a little late-season planting, but also transporting mulch from the entrance down into the park to make it more accessible. EarthCorps events happen from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. EarthCorps provides tools, gloves, guidance, a lot of information, snacks, and great fun. We’ll see you there! To sign up, go to the EarthCorps website and select the North Beach Park event for April 13.

Last but not least, of course, is our regular work party on Saturday, April 27, 9 a.m. to noon. We’re still cooking up details, but it’s sure to be something special.

Spring is a great time to visit the park, with all the leaves budding out and some of the early bloomers showing off their colors. Lots of bird song and bright emerald green.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

holyoutlaw: (picture icon iv)

If you wonder what I mean when I say “we put a survival ring around a tree,” this might help explain the process.

First you need a tree with ivy on it. And here it is!

The "before" picture
Tad and Chris stand in front of the tree we’re about to work on.

Before we pull the ivy off the tree, we build a platform to dry out the ivy and let it rot in place. In a few years, it becomes humus.

Preparing the ground
Here’s a blurry an action shot of Morry clearing the ground. It’s frequently the case that you have to pull up ivy to clear the spot for the platform.

First we put down a layer of burlap, to prevent shoots reaching up into the platform. Then long, thick logs (in this case, more than six feet long, and a couple inches in diameter) to form a square. More thick logs are laid out between the square, then a grid is formed by placing thinner logs across the bottom layer. The more separation between ground and platform the better. Then you can put the ivy on the platform.

Putting ivy on the platform
Morrie and Ellie put ivy on the platform. You can see some burlap just above the date stamp, and a framing log towards the middle foreground.

The ivy is cut at shoulder height. The ivy above the cut is left in place to die, and the ivy below the cut is pulled away from the tree. This sometimes takes a great deal of effort. Ivy roots can reach several inches in diameter, and roots growing close together will fuse into a solid mat. A crowbar is one of the most useful tools for this kind of work.

About two thirds done
Tad is holding a root that’s about 2″ in diameter. Also, you can see that we’re working on a slope with this tree.

Here’s the final ivy pile, with Tad standing behind it to give a sense of scale. He’s about 5’6″ tall.
The ivy pile

Here’s the “after” picture.
The "after" picture

It was taken from pretty much the same position as the “before” picture. The ivy above the cut will die, but it might take awhile. Even so, it will stop growing up the tree.

This tree was more than 35″ in diameter, and was about 100′ tall. The complete circumference was covered by ivy to about 70′.

Mirrored from Nature Intrudes. Please comment over there.

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