Project Title: Wolf Run Stream Side Buffer Stewardship Program
Project Goals: To improve water quality by restoring riparian stream buffers along Wolf Run Creek by engaging community leadership and volunteers in a coordinated, quality assured effort.
Project Objectives: To create and maintain stream buffer demonstration projects, and engage neighborhood leadership in maintaining stream buffers on both public and private property. To recruit, train, supply and support volunteer stewardship groups to assist LFUCG streamside property owners in managing vegetative riparian buffers along Wolf Run and its tributaries. To educate the public about the value of streamside buffers, to conduct performance monitoring showing water quality impacts of streamside buffer projects.
Project Partnerships: will include a network of volunteers, botanists, landscape designers, professional contractors, water quality specialists and administrative support. Friends of Wolf Run inc. is incorporated in Kentucky and is currently in good standing with the Secretary of State and the US Internal Revenue Service as a as a 501(c)3 Tax Exempt Organization.
Project Need: LFUCG Greenways and Parks land use policies call for a 25′ streamside buffer along waterways. This policy has limited understanding and acceptance among adjacent property owners and neighborhood groups. By establishing and maintaining demonstration projects, developing source materials for native riparian plant species and by recruiting local volunteers to assist LFUCG Land managers in maintaining these buffers by removing trash, controlling invasive species and planting native plants, we accomplish three things:
- Improvement of the quality of these streamside buffers
- Engage public understanding of the purpose and function of these vegetative buffers in order to reduce complaints from adjacent residents.
- Provide a test/demonstration area that private property owners can use to adopt similar practices on their streamside areas.
Project impact on water quality: Wolf Run Watershed is identified as an impaired waterway through the US EPA 303(d) listing process. Impairments include
- Pathogens, and
- Aquatic Life Support failure from habitat loss.
Riparian areas along wolf run also suffer from invasive plant infestations from Bush Honeysuckle. Bush honeysuckle reduces the effectiveness of stream side buffers by killing all the under story plants beneath their crown exposing bare soil, reducing the filtering capacity, increasing erosion and bank instability.
By restoring and maintaining native vegetative buffers along our waterways we can address all of these impairments by:
- Nutrient uptake from perennial grasses, plants, shrubs and trees.
- Shading the creek reducing algae blooms and macrophite infestations
- Filtering stormwater runoff through grasses and organic plant materials and robust root systems
- Stabilizing banks, reducing erosion and sediment loss
Project Strategy and work plan: Our model for work involves several discrete project elements:
- Volunteer Stream Buffer Stewardship recruitment, training and support
-Ongoing support for existing volunteer leadership through funding and technical assistance
-field days and demonstration workshops
-Support for new projects tackling several new neighborhoods that have not participated in the past.
-marking areas planted with educational signange and “Stream Buffer” boundary markers so that community members and mowing contractors are aware of the effort
- A) Allendale-Moberly Spring Greenway “Riparian Arboretum” demonstration area.
- B) Maintenance on areas already cleared and planted in previous years
Project Element: Volunteer Stream Buffer Stewardship Initiative
involves identifying and recruiting volunteers from neighborhoods adjacent to particular parks, greenways or other public spaces. This is accomplished by engaging residents in a progressive level of involvement/work activities:
- Conducting stream walks along portions of the stream and inviting area residents via e-mail, door to door flyers, post cards and/or neighbor to neighbor personal invitations. During stream walks we discuss water quality, habitat and stream side buffer issues and management strategies with the residents. We discuss and seek approval for a remediation plan for the stream from those participating.
- Planning Trash Cleanup Days, usually light litter pickups and trash removal
- Attacking Invasive Plants via bushwhacking parties. Using hand tools to remove bush honeysuckle, garlic mustard, multi-flora rose, and Japanese Knot Weed. These activities involve treating cut shrubs with herbicide in accordance with practices developed by the Invasive Plant Working Group.
- Follow up Native Plantings using volunteers to install perennials, shrubs and trees according to a planting plan.
- Leadership training and support through field days, on-site consultations with restoration experts
- Education and Outreach through distribution of “Living Along Kentucky Streams” and a “Stream Buffer Brochure” produced by the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service at work days, when promoting events and door to door distribution to stream side property owners.
- Effectiveness Monitoring: Continuing water quality checks for field parameters, (Dissolved Oxygen, pH, Temperature and Conductivity) as well as nutrients via field spectrophotometers and pathogens via E.Coli analysis in cooperation with LFUCG Town Branch Lab and Bluegrass Community and Technical College
- Identification and Support for” Key Stewards” to provide ongoing leadership for the parcel/greenway to organize follow-up efforts to keep invasive in check, water plants, and organize additional work days to take place beyond the scope of the project.
- Clearly marking stream buffer improvement areas with fiberglass posts and educational signs.
- Identify the project Team; describe how they each will be involved and their level of commitment to the project. Name the Project Manager (required) and their contact information.
Project Manager: Ken Cooke, Secretary, Friends of Wolf Run, firstname.lastname@example.org, 639 Cardinal Ln. Lexington, KY 40503 859-276-1253 Committed to project administration, grant reporting and volunteer management
Friends of Wolf Run Inc. Board of Trustees: Project financial oversight and sponsorship.
Bruce Hutcheson, President, Lisa Collins, Vice President, Frances Stokes CPA
Project Steering Committee: Program operations and support
Composed of key contacts and key stewards that meet to plan activities and provide key support.
Julian Campbell, Plant Materials Selection, Jerome Higgenbotham, Native Plant Propagation, Russ Turpin, Restoration Consultant, Ann Bowe, Landscape Designer, Laurie Fields, Landscape Designer, Will Overbeck, Plant Ecologist, Jean Watts, Water Quality Specialist, Amanda Gumbert, Extension Water Quality Liaison, Dr. Carmen Agouridis, Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering.
Demetria Melhorn, Division of Environmental Services: Reviews and approves work on LFUCG Greenways
Chris Cooperrider, LFUCG Parks and Recreation, Approves planting plans on park property, works with mowing contractors so that native plantings will not be accidentally destroyed.
Vernon Azevedo, LFUCG Sanitary Sewers, coordinates planning areas with sanitary sewer construction, Reviews and approves plans for stream buffer restoration work adjacent to planned RMP construction projects.
LFUCG Streets and Roads assists with removal of cuttings.
Other cooperating organizations:
Project Stewards and cooperating organizations
- Clay’s Mill Greenway
1869 Clay’s Mill Rd. (Wolf Run)
Layton Register, Key Steward
Spring Meadows Neighborhood
- Deauville Drive Greenway
Jerome Higginbotham, Key Steward
JH Technology Trust. Cardinal Valley Neighborhood
- Eastway Wetland Seep:
Eastway and Sunseeker Drives
Eric Spangler, Key Steward
Hill-N-Dale Neighborhood Association with Southland Association
- Vaughn’s Branch Versailles Road Corridor
Scot Smouse, Paula Singer
Friends of Versailles Road
5 Allendale Stream Buffer Restoration Nursery
and Demonstration Area
Dr. Julian Campbell, Project Manager
Bluegrass Woodland Restoration Center, Bluegrass Community and Technical College
6 .Pine Meadow Park Section of Vaughn’s Branch
Will Overbeck, Mead Overbeck neighborhood representative and Kentucky Native Plant Society Certified Native Plant Steward
Pine Meadows, Mason Headley & Cardinal Hill Neighborhood Association
7 Preston’s Cave Spring Park
Gary Libby, Skybax Environmental
LFUCG Environmental Commission, Cardinal Valley Neighborhood, Friends of Wolf Run