Wednesday, June 9, 2010

There will be a crew of volunteers spreading gravel on the Alder wetland trail, at the north end, the morning of Saturday, June 12th. The Gravel work will begin at 9:30am and will continue until the work is finished.

Friday, April 9, 2010















There is a dangerous tree near marker #4. A groups of volunteers are meeting to address it at 11am, Saturday.
The break is about 30ft above the ground and could fall unpredictably.

Also reported is an 8" alder across the Quiet Place trail.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Our volunteers have been doing a wonderful job of clearing and grooming the trails, through these windy storms and the trails are reported to be very good shape.
Because today was a very blustery day, don't be surprised if there is a bit of debris on the trails, in the morning. Keep in mind while walking among the alders, that the wind is predicted to pick up a bit Saturday afternoon.
The rain may result in some muddy areas, mostly in the southern portion, but this year has been a fairly dry year and the trails generally nice and firm.

Easter is here and the trillium are in bloom. Be sure to take a walk around the Trillium loop (the South Forest Loop) to see them in profusion.
Other bloomers reported this week are Bleeding hearts-between markers 13 and 16, False lily of the valley-on the South Forest loop, and Skunk cabbage-at lower Hawks pond.
Also of note spring fungi are making appearances.

Be sure to take advantage of the sun-breaks to enjoy the sights, song and smells of Spring on the Hansville Greenway.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Since it's such a gorgeous weekend, here's a quick trail update.
The trails are looking really good. The debris from Tuesday's wind storm has been cleaned up by volunteers. While there is a few muddy spots, the trail is in the driest condition, we've seen in years. Salmonberry, Flowering current, red elderberry and Indian plum are all blooming. The trillium is beginning to come on.

Spring has sprung, so get out there and enjoy our gem, the Hansville Greenway!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Herb Robert (Geranium robertianum)

General Description: Herb Robert is both a winter and a spring annual. It is a low growing plant.

Leaves:
* deeply dissected
* light green in color
* in late fall, foliage turns red. Also turn red with sufficient light.
* when crushed has a pungent odor

Flowers:
* pink
* five petals

Stems:
* fork
* brittle at the joints


Photo: www.kingcounty.gov

Herb Robert is a Class B invasive weed and poses a tremendous threat to forest understories and to plant biodiversity in forests of western Washington.
Because it was garden plant there have likely been numerous independent introductions.
This tough little plant adapts and thrives in a variety of exposures, moisture levels and soils (even germinating in rock crevices). It can be found it just about everywhere, from urban environments to undisturbed wilderness areas.
Because it is so adaptive, it out-competes native flora until it carpets the forest floor.

Propagated by seed, the plant is able to eject its seed as far as 15 to 20 feet. The seeds also have sticky threads, that help them catch a ride on leaves, animals and even passing ants and snails.
Germination is quick and the rosettes overwinter, flowering in late Spring and to late Summer.

Pulling the plant before bloom is the best weed control strategy. It has little root structure and can be pulled easily, but because the stems are brittle, the plant must be grasped at the base.
The removed plants must be bagged as they are pulled, to contain seed and the possibility of continued fruiting.
Pulling the plant also improves the "seedbed" for remaining dormant Herb Robert seeds and therefore the site must be revisited and monitored.

This geranium can look like the delicate and highly desirable native bleeding heart! Please do not pull weeds until the identification is absolute.

There is a scheduled Herb Robert clinic and work party to remove Herb Robert, from the Hansville Greenway, on Sunday March 7 starting at 11/am.
The group will be meeting at the southernmost place on NE Spruce drive (closest to post 15) and will work between posts 14-16.
Cover your arms and hands for good protection from nettles and bring a plastic bag to contain weeds.
Since this area contains both Herb Robert and Bleeding heart, this outing will be a great hands-on educational opportunity as well as an invaluable service to the health and vitality our own Greenway.

If you would like to participate, please contact Jo Roberts (litlfut@comcast.net) for details and directions.

Sources:
http://www.nwcb.wa.gov/weed_info/Written_findings/Geranium_robertianum.html
http://sanjuan.wsu.edu/noxious/documents/final-control-pdfs/Herb-robert.pdf
http://www.kingcounty.gov/environment/animalsAndPlants/noxious-weeds/weed-news/Dec_07.aspx#WeedoftheMonth

Saturday, February 27, 2010

It's been a generally dry winter. There are mucky areas, but they seem to be mostly at the southern reaches of the Greenway.

The area west of Buck Lake, which tends to by pretty mucky, is in good winter shape. There are muddy stretches, but the wide, west-side trail is not only passable, but in better shape then we've seen in years.

South end mud highlights include a very large puddle in the pothole on the trail between Hood Canal Drive and Marker 16. The trail section over the stream between Markers 16 and 15 is reported to be pretty mucky and slippery. And the swampy area between Hansville Road and Lower Hawk's pond, reported last year, is still swampy.

We'll have sun-breaks today and a sunny day is predicted for tomorrow. Everything seems to be coming alive with spring green sparks. It's going to be a glorious weekend for a walk in the Hansville Greenway!