Trees, Shrubs and Plugs… Oh My!
By: Patricia Wilson, Community Conservation & Stewardship Technician
This year, Kawartha Land Trust staff and volunteers have planted more than 18,730 native trees and shrubs on KLT protected properties and on private properties included in KLT’s Partners in Conservation initiative in the Fleetwood Creek Watershed.
More than 150 volunteers helped KLT with these projects. These tree planters came from a wide demographic of people including retirees, Fleming college students and youth campers from TRACKS and ME to WE summer camps.
The trees and shrubs were selected for their individual ability to survive long term in this area and through the changing climate. The species were used for a variety of projects this year that include reforestation, riparian zone and buffer strip establishment. They will also help mitigate impact from invasive European Buckthorn and enhance food sources for wildlife.
In addition to this, 2,326 tall grass prairie plugs were planted on two of KLT’s properties.
Over the course of this planting, a total of 2,000 tall grass prairie plugs were planted at KLT’s McKim-Garsonnin property, which has been the site of an ongoing tall grass prairie restoration project for over 10 years! During the fall, volunteers helped to collect tall grass prairie seeds from the existing prairie habitat that will be used to propagate plugs to be planted next summer.
Three hundred and twenty six plugs were planted at KLT’s John Earle Chase Memorial Park property as the initial steps of a new tall grass project that will replace the existing non-native hay grass species including Smooth Brome and Timothy grass species with native tall grasses and wildflowers that were historically once there.
The Tall Grass Prairie habitat is a globally rare ecosystem and with only 1% remaining in the world it is critical that we try to revitalize as much as possible. This ecosystem provides food and habitat for a large number of species including several Species at Risk butterflies and birds and will enhances the biodiversity of an area significantly.
KLT works to maintain and enhance ecosystem health. By planting a diversity of native vegetation that caters to forest, prairie and wetland habitat we are able to achieve a higher impact across the natural landscape.
Posted November 22, 2019