Restoration

 

At the end of the 19th century, farmers cleared vast forests of alder, maple, and massive cedar from the Valley. Nature seemed infinite, and over time farmers cleared the trees and shrubs right up to the riverbanks, not realizing that those riparian forests were central strands in the Valley’s web of life. Riparian forests filter silt and nutrients from runoff headed to the river, produce woody debris to shelter maturing salmon, and provide homes for a wide range of wildlife. Without streamside vegetation, precious farmland soil is lost to the river, fewer birds visit to regulate crop pests, and there are fewer homes for the native pollinators that ensure abundant crops.

For the last 15 years, Oxbow has been working with organizations like Stewardship Partners, King Conservation District, and the Snoqualmie Watershed Forum to clear invasive species from our lands and re-plant native streamside forests. Oxbow was one of the first farms to be designated certified Salmon-Safe in the Puget Sound Region. Today, guided by a comprehensive Ecological Management Plan for the property, we continue the work of restoration with more energy and hope than ever.

Restoration Work Parties

Restoration volunteers at work.

Our restoration team hosts work parties to restore the native habitats around the Oxbow property; restoration promotes diversity of wildlife and plants and maintains a healthy environment for growing food. Join us as we plant new native plants, care for the native plants that are already here, and remove the invasive plants that push out our native friends.

Restoration work parties are usually 3 to 4 hours long, including a brief tour of the farm and an introduction to Oxbow’s history and mission. No experience is necessary, but all work parties occur outdoors and involve physical work such as digging, pulling, and lifting. Volunteers should come prepared with close-toed shoes and gardening/thick leather gloves – think blackberries! Dress for the weather: wear sun protection, and long-sleeved shirts and long pants are recommended for invasive weed removal. Be sure to bring water and snacks, and you are welcome to bring a lunch and enjoy a family or group picnic on the farm after all of your hard work.

Sign up for scheduled volunteer restoration events or set up a private restoration event for your group by contacting our Restoration Volunteer Coordinator. Please be sure to indicate which event you are signing up for in your e-mail subject line.

If you are interested in receiving regular updates about our restoration work parties, contact our Restoration Volunteer Coordinator or follow us on Facebook.  If you are interested in becoming a regular restoration volunteer, take a short survey so that we can design our program with your schedule in mind.

Don’t forget to check back in to find out about Oxbow’s conservation and restoration efforts and successes.

How to participate

Lend a hand planting some beautiful northwest trees. We’ve got a huge area cleared and ready for native plants. If you just love removing blackberry, we’ve still got plenty left just for you and your shovel, but the focus will be on getting plants in the ground. Take a selfie with your favorite plant and come back next year to see how its grown! 

Use the West Entrance (Field Trip Entrance) to meet at the covered picnic tables at the far end of the parking area. We will meet at the start time (rain or shine!) and walk to our restoration site from there. Bring a water bottle, garden pruners or clippers, a trowel, gloves and any other gardening tools that you like to use if you have them. Gloves, loppers, and shovels will be provided if you need them. You are welcome to stay after the event to have a picnic. 

Please RSVP using the button below. Be sure to mention which Restoration Work Party date(s) you’re interested in when you respond.

2018 Restoration Work Party Schedule

We’re excited to have you join us for some satisfying restoration work that protects native plants and improves habitat for wildlife of all kinds! Please RSVP using the green button below. All weekend events are held from 9 AM to 1 PM unless otherwise noted with an *

April 1st 

*April 14th, 10AM-2PM. This is a special event in collaboration with Stewardship Partners. Please RSVP on their website.

April 21st

May 5th

May 20th

 

June 2nd

*June 6th 5-8 pm

June 17th

July 7th

*July 18th 5-8 pm

 


Minor Waivers 

Please note that while we welcome minors to volunteer with us, the following waivers must be filled out by a parent or guardian and returned to our Restoration Volunteer Coordinator, either by email at dawn@oxbow.org or in person, the day of your volunteer event! 

Volunteer Service Agreement – Minor_2018

Photo Release_2018

RSVP for a Restoration Work Party

Donate to Oxbow and help us carry out our mission!

Oxbow is a 501c(3) nonprofit organization, and we can’t do this work without your help! We’re grateful for your contributions.

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