Help restore urban forests on Green Seattle Day, Nov. 7

 

Last year 845 volunteers helped the Green Seattle Partnership plant nearly 5,000 plants in 21 parks across Seattle on Green Seattle Day, and this year, the organization is hoping to do even more.

The Green Seattle Day planting party will kick off at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 7 at Rainier Community Center (registration begins at 8:30 a.m. with coffee and snacks). After a brief welcome, buses will deliver volunteers to four restoration projects in Southeast Seattle – Genesee Park, Cheasty Greenspace and Seward Park. Volunteers can participate in educational and family-oriented activities throughout the day and are invited to return by bus to Rainier Community Center to enjoy a free lunch and hang out with fellow volunteers.

Other Green Seattle Day events are being held throughout the city at sites such as Discovery, Jackson and Leschi parks.

To view all event locations and to register, visit http://greenseattle.org/get-involved/green-seattle-day/.

The Green Seattle Partnership is a unique public/private partnership between the City of Seattle and the Forterra (formerly Cascade Land Conservancy). For more information on the Green Seattle Partnership, visit greenseattle.org.

 

Help restore heron habitat

Join Green Seattle Partnership from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 13, for a work party at Kiwanis Memorial Preserve Park and help restore forested habitats for the Great Blue Heron and other wildlife. Nesting season for herons is in full swing.

Volunteers will contribute to forest restoration to ensure suitable nesting habitat for generations to come and will help reduce concentrations of greenhouses gases in the atmosphere.

Tools and gloves will be provided. Volunteers should wear sturdy shoes. The group will meet near the parking lot of Commodore Park (3330 W Commodore Way).

To register, go here.

Seattle City Council Recognizes Success of Green Seattle Partnership

Over 1,000 acres of land in restoration thanks to decade-long partnership

SEATTLE, Monday, Nov. 3, 2014 – Today, the Seattle City Council recognized the Green Seattle Partnership (GSP) and 10 years of successful collaboration between Forterra and the City of Seattle to build this important community resource that works to restore and care for the City’s forested parklands. Today also marks the beginning of a year-long celebration of the GSP’s 10th anniversary and the 2015 collaborative effort with partners and community members to update the 20-Year Plan.

“The Green Seattle Partnership is a unique effort that enhances community while restoring Seattle’s forested parklands. This program’s importance has been recognized and supported by the City since its inception 10 years ago,” said Mayor Murray. “Getting out to plant trees at a Green Seattle restoration event at Discovery Park earlier this month was a pleasure.  It’s amazing that events like this are happening at our parks every weekend.”

Since Forterra and the City launched the Partnership in 2005, it has grown to a citywide effort initiating restoration on more than 1,000 acres of forested parkland. The GSP has logged 695,000 volunteer hours and planted over 160,000 trees and 250,000 shrubs. Critical to the Partnership are the efforts of over 120 Forest Stewards and the work of many partner organizations including EarthCorps, Seattle Parks Foundation, Seattle Goodwill, Nature Consortium, Mountains to Sound Greenway, and Washington Native Plant Society.

In 2004, Forterra and the City, under the guidance of Former Mayor Greg Nickels, came together to recognize the power of engaging our residents in the restoration of Seattle’s parklands to further engender community investment and connection to them. In 2005, the partnership launched a 20-Year Strategic Plan and coordinated program to harness existing efforts and galvanize an informed, involved,  and active community to tend to the lands that serve our neighborhoods.

“We look forward to 10 more years of building and maintaining healthy forested parklands through the Green Seattle Partnership and continuing our work with the City of Seattle, Mayor Murray and all the other organizations that are a part of this great effort,” said Forterra President, Gene Duvernoy.

The City Council is not the only one to recognize the efforts of the GSP. Seattle was recognized earlier this year by STAR Communities as the most sustainable city in the entire country and the GSP was acknowledged by STAR as one of four efforts that set Seattle above the rest.

STAR’s award is a nod to the power of volunteering – each hour of a volunteer’s time is a priceless asset to our city. Green Seattle Day, the GSP’s largest annual volunteer day of restoration activities, ranging from removing weeds and invasive plants to planting native trees and shrubs, is planned for Saturday, Nov. 8. Learn more at greenseattle.org.

Contacts
Forterra
Liza Sheehan, Marketing Manager
206-200-4805
lsheehan@forterra.org

Green Seattle Partnership has plenty to celebrate on its 10th birthday

When people picture the Pacific Northwest, visions of mountains and lush greenery come to mind. Though our infamous rain fall helps, maintaining Seattle’s urban forests and keeping our city healthy and green is a big job. Green Seattle Partnership (GSP) was created to aid in that effort. GSP turns 10 years old this year, and the organization has a lot to celebrate.

Seattle Parks Plant Ecologist Michael Yadrick gives a tour in the West Duwamish Greenbelt to highlight the Green Seattle Partnership’s restoration efforts.

The Green Seattle Partnership is a unique public-private venture dedicated to promoting a livable city by re-establishing and maintaining healthy urban forests. It was created in 2004 by a Memorandum of Agreement between the City of Seattle and the Cascade Land Conservancy (now known as Forterra). The GSP is a 20-year investment in the restoration of our forests.

The GSP works with many community partners such as EarthCorps and Goodwill. The GSP has trained more than 200 volunteer forest stewards who lead volunteer work parties throughout the city. The GSP coordinates with Seattle Parks crews and plant ecologists to ensure its volunteers are equipped with mulch, plants and necessary tools to complete their work.

Seattle’s urban forests were damaged as a result of 150 years of logging, view clearing and neglect. The trees were plagued with invasive plants like Himalayan blackberry and ivy. Of the 3,700 acres of openspace managed by Seattle Parks and Recreation, GSP was tasked with restoring 2,500 acres of forested parklands.

GSP representatives have been busy reaching out to Seattle communities and businesses to educate people and get them involved in environmental stewardship.  And their efforts have paid off. After 10 years, GSP has enrolled 1,299 acres of parklands into restoration. Between 2005 and August 2014, people donated 694,159 volunteer hours to the organization. So how were those hours spent?

GSP forest stewards and volunteers have removed 816 acres of invasive species, installed 528,806 plants and watered 1,023,538. In fact, this year, GSP’s work was credited with helping make Seattle the most sustainable city in the nation.

In its next 10 years, GSP hopes to enter nearly 1,500 more acres into restoration, restore trails and make tree canopy coverage more equitable across Seattle neighborhoods.

According to Seattle Parks Plant Ecologist Michael Yadrick, once our urban forests are healthy, keeping them that way becomes pretty straightforward.

“You can stack the deck in favor of native plants and make life hard for the invasives,” Yadrick said. “You can help the Green Seattle Partnership change the outcome of the battle by getting out there and removing the invasive plants, replanting the natives and monitoring their growth for future health. If you do it right, that victory will last.”

To learn more about GSP, visit greenseattle.org. If you’d like to volunteer with GSP, you can find plenty of events here.

The GSP’s biggest volunteer push of the year, Green Seattle Day, is coming up on Saturday, Nov. 8.

Community invited to Jefferson Horticulture open house on June 21

Seattle Parks and Recreation invites the community to an open house at the Jefferson Horticulture facility from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, June 21. The Parks Natural Resource Unit is hosting this fun family event. Visitors can tour the greenhouse, learn about the heavy equipment and turf crews’ responsibilities, and meet the urban forestry team including the tree and trail crews. The facility is located at 1600 S Dakota St. on the east edge of Jefferson Park.

Staff will be on hand to creatively share and educate the community on what work is done from Jefferson Horticulture. This building houses many Parks work units including urban forestry, landscape crews, the Green Seattle Partnership, and Specialty Gardens, which cares for the Japanese Garden, Kubota Garden the Arboretum and the Conservatory.

The horticulture facility and staff are essential in our effort to keep Seattle parks green. The department has its own greenhouse and nursery facilities where more than 250,000 annual and woody plants are propagated and grown each year for use in parks and city landscapes.

The horticulture program has a long history at Seattle Parks and Recreation and has undertaken a number of horticultural renovation projects that have successfully restored Seattle’s natural ecosystems. Its heritage goes back to the beginning of the 20th century when the Park Commission invited the Olmsted Brothers landscape architectural firm to plan and design the park system for Seattle.

For more information please visit http://www.seattle.gov/parks/horticulture/ or contact Necka Kapesi at necka.kapesi@seattle.gov or 206-684-4111.