Busy Start to Winter in the Tryon Creek Watershed

As the days have grown darker and the ground wetter, our volunteers at TCWC have still been active and taking advantage of the wetter conditions to plant natives and pull ivy.

Tryon Creek Watershed, tree planting, Nove. 22, 2014 001

 

Deer-Coyote Planting with Renaissance Academy

On November 23, we hosted a work party on National Family Volunteering Day with the Renaissance Academy of Arts and Sciences. A group of 9 students in the school’s environmental science class came out with their parents to plant natives at the confluence of Deer and Coyote Creek. If you remember, volunteers removed invasives at this site in September as part of the SOLVE Beach and Riverside Clean Up Event so it was in need of natives to help retain soil where we had pulled ivy and periwinkle.

The students had been learning about watersheds, invasive species, and native species in their class so they enjoyed seeing the concepts they had been learning applied throughout the service day. They each got to select their very own Oregon grape and choose where to plant it.

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Aside from the Oregon grape, they also planted a nice variety of cedar, Indian plum, wahoo, and fringe cup. They planted a total of 45 natives, which certainly made the riparian habitat look more robust.

IMGP0312 IMGP0313After the work party, the landowners of the site, Mike and Marilyn Duffield, hosted the families in their home and provided a delicious array of snacks! It was great to have the opportunity for landowners and volunteers to meet each other. Overall, the students and the families walked away with a better understanding of how riparian habitats affect bodies of water and what they can do to be better stewards to their own watershed.

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Ivy Pull at Tryon Creek State Natural Area Adopt-A-Plot

We also hosted a work party on December 7 at TCWC’s Adopt-A-Plot in Tryon Creek State Natural Area. TCWC has maintained this plot for several years and it spans between the High Bridge and Obie Bridge. We had a great turnout of 17 volunteers, including Torrey and Sharon from our board!

Our volutneers searched meticulously for small patches of ivy that were beginning to encroach on the plot. Since the area has been maintained for so many years, there is hardly any ivy, but it is important to do routine maintenance to make sure it does not return. Our group spread out and was able to cover the entire plot by the end of the afternoon, which will hopefully keep the ivy at bay for the next year or so. Big thank you to Carl Axelsen for organizing, leading, and donating refreshments to the work party!

 

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TCWC 2014 Silent Auction Live (on Ebay!)

The 2014 Tryon Creek Watershed Council Silent Auction is now live! Please visit our auction site to bid on items:

http://givingworks.ebay.com/charity-auctions/charity/tryon-creek-watershed-council/57214/

Vacations:

Outdoor Activities:

Other:

 

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Stone Bridge Plantings

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As the days grow shorter and the weather becomes wetter, that means the start of planting season for the Watershed Council! We have been planting many native species out in the field this month, slowly clearing out our nursery to make room for when the Plant Sale orders arrive in early February.  With the help of two groups of Pacific Academy students, we planted over 60 native species at the Stone Bridge, which crosses Nettle Creek, a major tributary to Tryon Creek in the Lake Oswego area.

As many of you know, the Stone Bridge is an exciting project that was completed this past summer. The old Stone Bridge contained a culvert that blocked off access for fish populations to spawning areas. The new wooden bridge has no culvert and is a great step in completely opening Tryon Creek for spawning fish. You can read a more detailed explanation of the project here.

Old Bridge

Old Bridge

New Bridge

New Bridge

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After the construction, the area surrounding the new bridge was in need of restoration. We had 15 students from the the Pacific Academy help us with the restoration. The Pacific Academy is a small, therapeutic alternative school operated by the Northwest Regional Educational Service District and located in Washington County. This service-learning opportunity allowed students to learn about the bridge replacement project, fish migration, riparian habitat, native plant identification, and erosion.

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Corrina demonstrating how to plant.

Students also learned techniques on how to plant natives effectively. With this new knowledge, students got to work with their shovels. The digging was a little rocky but the students persevered and were able to plant 65 species, which included salmonberry, fringe cup, willow, and ninebark, to name a few. If you get a chance, hike down to the site to see the new bridge and the array of native plants.

 

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A student planting a salmonberry

 

We would like to thank the Pacific Academy students and teachers for partnering with us for the project. We also want to thank Carl Axelsen for helping coordinate and lead the project – his efforts made the entire planting possible!

 

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No Ivy Day

 

We had a great turnout to both of our sites for No Ivy Day on Saturday, October 25. If you are not familiar with No Ivy Day, it is an annual city-wide event sponsored by Portland Parks and Recreation. Started in 2003, No Ivy Day is an event that reduces the amount of mature ivy in the Portland metro area while also educating the public about ivy and its negative impacts on local ecosystems.

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See how big the ivy vines can get!

We were thrilled to participate in this city-wide effort by hosting not one but two ivy removal sites! One group meet at the Oak Creek HOA, a brand-new site for TCWC, and the other was at Arnold Creek, an important tributary to Tryon Creek.

We had 16 total volunteers (eight at each site), which included a nice mix of local neighbors, repeat volunteers, and a few of our board members! After some coffee and an introduction, our volunteers set to work. Rain clouds loomed overhead but (thankfully) held off the entire morning, giving us nice, cool working conditions. The terrain was steep and slippery but that did not deter our volunteers. By noon, we had removed  ivy from over 90 trees (30 at Oak Creek, 60 at Arnold Creek)!

Ivy throughout Arnold Creek.

Ivy throughout Arnold Creek.

Ivy that climbs trees is a concern for two reasons. First, if left long enough, the ivy will eventually kill the tree. From the perspective of a watershed, trees are essential to provide habitat for wildlife and to shade creeks and rivers to maintain healthy temperatures for aquatic life. When water gets too warm, fish and other species cannot survive. Second, once ivy starts to climb upwards, it is able to fully mature, flower, and spread its seed. By removing it from trees, we are slowing down the plant’s ability to reproduce.

To remove ivy effectively from the trees at our sites, we used the “lifesaver” technique:

The lifesaver method takes a little bit more time but is very effective in protecting each tree from ivy invasion. Do you have an ivy covered tree in your yard? Try this method and help remove ivy in your own area – all you need is hand clippers and gloves (although a saw and grubbing tool can be handy, too).

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No Ivy Day October 25

What: Tree Ivy Removal

When: Saturday, October 25, 8:45 am – 12:00 pm

Where: Oak Creek HOA, located at the intersection of Vesta Street and Oak Creek Drive

What to bring: Pants, closed-toe shoes, weather-appropriate clothing, water bottle

What will be provided: Coffee, snacks, tools, gloves

Tryon Creek Watershed Council will be hosting a work party for No Ivy Day on October 25! If you are unfamiliar with No Ivy Day, it is an annual ivy removal event in Portland started in 2003 focused on providing stewardship opportunities in our beloved natural areas while raising awareness of the challenges they face.

As many of you know, ivy is incredibly invasive and prevalent in the Portland metro area. To learn more about English ivy and its harmful effects on ecosystems click here. We will be holding our work party at the Oak Creek HOA, located in the Oak Creek neighborhood in southwest Portland. This will be our first work party at the site so it will be great to have a lot of helping hands to kick off this project!

Ivy vines covering a tree

Ivy climbing up a tree. When ivy is able to climb, it matures and spread its seeds.

Tree after ivy removal

Ivy after a “lifesaver” – essentially cutting a ring around the base of the tree to kill the ivy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Following the work party, the City of Portland is inviting all volunteers to a post-work celebration at  the No Ivy League Field Headquarters in Forest Park from 12:30pm-2:00pm . Enjoy refreshments, listen to special speakers, and mingle with other volunteers.

We hope to see you at this great event! You can register at the No Ivy Day website here.

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Deer-Coyote Invasive Removal

On Saturday, September 27, 19 volunteers showed up to the confluence of Deer and Coyote Creek (tributaries to Tryon Creek) to help remove invasive periwinkle and ivy. TCWC partnered up with SOLVE for their 30th annual Beach and Riverside Clean Up Event, a state-wide volunteer day to help improve Oregon waterways. We had a variety of volunteers show up, including PBS Engineering and Environmental, Wells Fargo Advisors, and a few neighbors and high school students from the local neighborhood.

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PBS Engineering and Environmental

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Wells Fargo Advisors

After enjoying a brief introduction from SOLVE and TCWC, the volunteers got down to business. Using hand cultivators, our volunteers pulled out invasive ivy and periwinkle. Even with the cloud cover, we were all breaking a sweat. A few hours later, a 60 x 145 foot area of invasives had been cleared. You can see the results in our before and after photos:

Thank you to SOLVE for partnering with us for the event! They hosted a total of  4,700 volunteers state-wide that made the following improvements to Oregon’s beaches, parks, neighborhoods and waterways:

  • Removed 52,200 pounds of trash and recyclable material from beaches, rivers, neighborhoods and natural areas
  • Planted 286 native trees and shrubs in parks, on school grounds and in natural areas
  • Removed invasive non-native vegetation from approximately 3 acres of land

And a big thank you to our hard-working volunteers! They made quite the difference at the Coyote-Deer Creek confluence and it is now ready for some native plants this winter.

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Saturday, September 27, 10am- 1pm: Deer-Coyote Creek Invasive Removal Work Party

Join Tryon Creek Watershed Council and SOLVE for the 30th annual Beach and Riverside Clean Up! On Saturday September 27, SOLVE is hosting several volunteer sites to improve various water sources throughout Oregon. Come volunteer with TCWC and remove invasive species from Deer and Coyote Creeks, two tributaries to Tryon Creek.

Volunteering requires registration. For more information, or to register to volunteer, visit the SOLVE website: http://www.solveoregon.org/get-involved/events/deer-coyote-ivy-pull

Questions? Contact TCWC Volunteer Coordinator Adra Lobdell
[email protected]

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Two dollar native plant sale is open!

Our $2 plant sale is open!

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Stone Bridge Project Underway

We are currently beginning the replacement of the Stone Bridge Culvert with a wooden bridge that will allow fish passage.  The project will also feature habitat improvement including the placement of large wood and rocks to provide pools and shelter.  More information is here: http://tcwc.tryonfriends.org/stone-bridge-project/

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We’re hiring an Americorps Member!

TCWC is very excited to announce that we are offering a position to an AmeriCorps Member as a Volunteer Coordinator.  The position is in partnership with the Confluence Environmental Center.  Deadline to apply has been extended to July 14 8AM.  The dates of service are September 3 2014-July 24 2015.

More information is here.

 

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