October was a busy month in Garber, from a fun habitat restoration day, to the sad but expected news that Sudden Oak Death is spreading in Claremont Canyon and other parts of the East Bay, to our onsite visit and planning session with Lech Naumovich, Golden Hour Restoration Institute. The Garber Park Stewards and Golden Hour are once again offering several exciting and informative workshops this Winter season. Highlights below:
October Saturday Workday. THANK YOU to all of our wonderful volunteers - we couldn’t do it without you! Seventeen volunteers came to contribute to Garber’s restoration, which allowed us to split into several groups. One group dug up Himalayan Blackberries that were invading the 1st Creek along the Lower Loop Trail. which will allow the thimbleberries and ferns to continue to fill in this beautiful creek area.. Another group focused on the Sylvan Trail, cutting ivy from the trees and around the ferns. A third group stayed at the Evergreen Lane Restoration area, pulling invasive weeds and cutting back the Bromus, revealing lovely new sprouts under the blanket of leaves. A most satisfying day.
On-Site planning with Lech Naumovich, Executive Director of Golden Hour Restoration Institute. We always look forward to our quarterly planning sessions with Lech where we assess the status of Garber, monitor our restoration sites, and plan future stewardship priorities and workshops. This year, because of the lack of rain – it has been the driest year (January-October) on record - Garber does look parched. So, we were pleasantly surprised to find that most of our seedlings, buried under a blanket of leaves, appeared to be alive and well, waiting for the rains before springing back to life. It will be very interesting to see what the return of the rains produces at our restoration sites.
Citizen Science Workshops. The Garber Park Stewards are excited to be partnering with Golden Hour for several exciting workshops throughout the winter season, beginning with a Woodland Understory Restoration on Sunday, December 8. Below Fireplace Plaza we have found a large flat area where the ivy has not yet totally blanketed and engulfed the area. Lech will discuss best practices and keys for ivy removal which we will then remove from the project site, find and flag any new natives we find in the area, and, if the soil is wet, create a small woodland habitat using existing nearby materials. And, most exciting of all, Lech said this will be a great workshop for another TimeLapse Video!