Thursday, March 22, 2012

Friends of Trees GSI Rock Creek

On Wednesday I got to do some Team Wednesday volunteering that I don't normally get to do, which is helping out the Green Space Initiative (GSI) folk, instead of the Neighbourhood Trees program. Usually on Wednesdays I go out with a Friends of Trees staff member and another volunteer or two and we plant trees around Portland that didn't get planted on the usual Saturday planting days for one reason or another. There are usually four or five trees to plant and it's a good time, but this time I got to do something different! Two FoT staff members (Logan and Kris, who are lovely and very interesting and fun), three other volunteers, and I headed to a farm next to Rock Creek, where there has been some plantings happening to eventually help with water quality. There were hundreds of hunter orange surveyor's tape-tagged trees and shrubs that had previously been planted and we were there to plant 100 ocean spray shrubs and tube many of the trees that deer, bunnies, and beavers like to nibble on. It was a cold day and it rained and sometimes mixed in a little snow, but spirits were high and we had a great time!

 Cool old barn next to the planting site

All of the orange-tagged shrubs were previously planted 

I got to meet Kris, on the far right, on Wednesday. So nice! 

My first job was to clear five spaces for planting shrubs around each stake. I think this one is funny because it's in the middle of piles of blackberry cane and a tree branch to boot. But I did it! 

Using a specially-made "trailbrayker" (made by Mr. Bray here in town) to clear away grass and whatnot and get down to some good dirt! 

Cutest baby Douglas Fir ever. And it looks like it's wearing a tiny scarf! ;o) 

Kinda hard to tell, but there are a few hundred planted shrubs and trees here. Lots of surveyor's tape! 

Then the weather started getting extra snotty, hence the water on the lens. I forget the name of this volunteer, but she was really nice! She was "tubing" the tree and then staking it with bamboo.


More tubes! 

Tubes, tubes, and even more tubes! And rain!

All in all, it was an awesome day and I had a bunch of fun AND I found out I am going to be one of the Summer Inspectors!! I'll get to walk around and check on trees and write a little report card for the home owners about how their tree is doing. I'm really excited to learn more about trees because I really don't know a whole lot yet, but every week I plant I learn something new, which is great. Knowing me, I will probably also want to name every tree and inform the home owner what their tree's name is. ;o)

I have two more plantings I'm able to make and then I go to Ketchikan and when I get back, planting season is over! I'll have to wait until fall to start planting again.


  1. What an amazing place to be doing such interesting work. I love the first image especially with the barn with the mossy roof. Beautiful!

  2. Thank you! It was super fun and, while I like planting trees, it's always fun to do another task, just to keep things fresh. I just look forward to Wednesdays so much!