In February, Team Flora was created as a subsidiary of the Trail Crew to work specifically on restoration where invasive plants have been removed. Unfortunately, buying native grass and wildflower seeds is expensive. The work-around is harvesting ripe seed from the fields and collecting donations of native seeds from the public.
Key or “showcase” projects include Sessom Creek and Schulle Natural Areas, but all the natural areas receive attention as opportunities present themselves. For example, during the construction of Centipede Trail in Spring Lake, the hillside was seeded with donated mountain laurel, frostweed and inland sea oats to slow rainwater flowing downhill to Sink Creek.
The group of about 7 volunteers, composed of SMGA members and Master Naturalists, receive and seek the advice of the City arborist and a botanist who is a city resident. Work in Sessom Creek is at the direction of city staff and is a multi-year project that includes invasive removal, contour shaping and seeding the grasses, wildflowers and understory plants.
The group has met regularly throughout the year as seeds ripened or prime planting season arrived.
Written by Lance Jones, Outreach Committee and Team Flora member, as well as former SMGA board member.