The 2019 Wildflower Planting Project along a new path to the Biocore Prairie from the Frautschi Point Parking lot was a great success. Despite the heavy overcast sky and with rain predicted later in the morning, 16 volunteers came out ready plant, adding much cheer to this day and planting joyful sights for summer visitors. The five designated planting areas, plus a sixth area at the parking lot, were cleared of buckthorn about three years ago. For the last two years, speckled sunlight reaching the forest floor again encouraged wood flowers seeds in the ground to sprout. Thus, the project planners—a team of Friends and Preserve staff—could be assured that additional plantings will be reasonably successful. The plants ordered were divided into six batches, each batch selected to be most suitable for planting in a specific plot area, considering the amount of sunlight and slope direction and soil moisture. Monitoring the plantings this and next year will help us further improve the management of spring planting projects.
Our team included volunteers recruited at field trips and on Earth Day, as well as 4 past presidents of the Friends: Ann Burgess, Janis Cooper, Glenda Denniston, Doris Dubielzig, Gisela Kutzbach, Roma Lenehan, MJ Morgan, Tom Morgan, Biss Nitschke, John Pfender, Holly Regan, Marj Rhine, Steve Sentoff, Monica Sentoff, Will Waller, Trisha Zhu. Bryn Scriver of the Preserve Staff supervised the planting.
We used the efficient predator spades to plant the wildflowers with minimum disturbance of surrounding soil. When it started to rain around 11:00 am, the bulk of the plants was in the ground, and we left the rest for another day. See the full list of plants at Projects. We gathered for a quick round of refreshments with fruits, cheese and baked things. There was much satisfaction about enhancing this restoration area of Frautschi Woods with native flowering plants, sedges and grasses. The rain gently watered the new plantings. Photos provided by Glenda Denniston, Gisela Kutzbach, Bryn Scriver.
Added: On May 24, the remaining plants were planted by Preserve seasonal staff in the designated plots.