Neighbors continue Springwater Trail habitat restoration efforts

Find out why Powellhurst-Gilbert neighbors continue to preen the area around the trail …

Portland Parks & Recreation City Nature East Susan Hawes, Larissa Ell, and organizer Delores Wood take a break while maintaining the Springwater Trail.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
For years now, Powellhurst-Gilbert Neighborhood Association Greening Committee Chair Dolores Wood has led an effort to restore natural vegetation along the Springwater Trail, on either side of SE 128th Avenue.

> See our story covering their outer East Portland,
large-scale planting effort in 2012: CLICK HERE.

A small-but-dedicated band of volunteers, assisted by Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) staffers, were at it again on June 28 – though they were occasionally dodging passing rainstorms.

Portland Parks & Recreation City Nature East Susan Hawes guides a volunteer through the native (and also non-native) greenery.

“Here we are, continuing our restoration project along the Springwater Trail,” Wood told East Portland News. “Six volunteers came to help, thanks to listings on the Oregon SOLV and Johnson Creek Watershed Council websites, and we’ve had a couple of drop-in volunteers today.”

“We are removing non-native plant species, giving some sunlight to the native flowers so they can grow. And, we’re reducing the fire danger, by removing the non-native species that choke out the native plants.”

Volunteer Ernest Wood digs and chops invasive plant species from the Springwater Trail area.

Blowing wind has carried in seeds of non-native grasses that have grown in the area, Wood pointed out. “We’re hoping to find a way to remove the grass without killing our native plants.”

It takes a constant effort to preserve a site like this, observed PP&R City Nature East Specialist Susan Hawes. “We’re working to maintain a site that was planted three or four years ago.

“We are really seeing some of those plants pop up now,” Hawes said. “We have some native wildflowers and native shrubs. It’s really exciting to see them taking root.”

“Walk-up volunteer” Stephen Igo signs in at the clean-up event.

You, too, can help the environment in Powellhurst-Gilbert! Circle October 25th on your calendar, and sign up to participate in “No Ivy Day” – the next event at this site.

© 2014 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News

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