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Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve

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Planting saplings and seedlings; team deems it “tree-rific”

Written on: April 21st, 2010 in Blackbird Creek ReserveStewardship

After arriving back at the Estuary from our exciting spring breaks – some of the AmeriCorps NCCC team traveled to Virginia while others went to Washington DC, Connecticut, and north to Wilmington – the team was ready to start working again.

On Tuesday, Wolf 3 got WET and WILD. In other words, we were trained by Jen in the art of teaching children about water conservation and other water-related issues. Especially satisfying was the opportunity to pretend that we were in 4th grade again (even though it didn’t take much effort).  With the skills we learned, the team is now ready to help children at the reserve learn about water issues in fun and engaging ways!

We worked again with Carl Solberg on Wednesday from County Parks, this time rejuvenating a small 16-acre protected wildlife area behind the Irish Hills housing subdivision. We removed invasive species, cleaned up trash, and planted an initial batch of new trees.

AmeriCorps Team planting bare root seedlings

On Thursday we found ourselves back at Blackbird, preparing for the 800 trees we would be planting on Saturday. This involved digging holes, and flagging the specific spot for each tree (800 flags). Meaghan actually placed every single flag: Good job, Meaghan!

Friday we returned to Irish Hill to, you guessed it, plant trees. By the end of the day, we’d successfully planted around 75 young trees in the protected area and another 300 seedlings at the other end of the subdivision. It was a long, hot day but very satisfying not only because Carl bought us cold lemonade but also because the area was in desperate need of some trees. The birds were singing songs of happiness even before the trees were all the way in the ground!

Tree planting at Blackbird Creek Reserve

Saturday was the big event: a tree planting extravaganza with over 20 volunteers (boys scouts and AmeriCorps NCCC, as well as some locals) that successfully planted all 800 trees before noon. Efficient is an understatement!

Volunteers of all ages came out to help plant trees at the Blackbird!

-Wolf 3, AmeriCorps NCCC

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