April 2011 Newsletter
Snoqualmie Watershed Forum

You’re Invited - Help Set Roots at Stillwater Wildlife Area

Help set roots at Stillwater - volunteer planting a tree In honor of Earth Day and National Volunteer Week the Stilly-Snohomish Fisheries Enhancement Task Force will be hosting an event on Saturday April 16th at Stillwater Wildlife Area.  The event will include a tree planting to help restore salmon habitat. Volunteers can also visit booths set-up by partner organizations to learn more about conservation related issues and activities.  Finally, we will celebrate and thank the volunteers with a salmon BBQ!  This project is funded by King Conservation District (KCD) and by a 2010 REI stewardship grant.

To join the festivities visit: http://www.stillysnofish.org/.

Fall City Park Habitat Restoration Is Well Underway

Fall City Park habitat restoration workThe Snoqualmie Tribe ENR Division is working on Phase II of the Fall City Park habitat restoration project, a site of cultural importance to the tribe. This is a 5-year project with projected restoration of over 14 acres of critical habitat along the river. So far we have cleared and restored two large areas in native plants, laid out a trail, and installed our first interpretive sign (with more planned). We are focusing on incorporating plants for traditional foods, in particular berries of all kinds. On March 5th we hosted a major volunteer event with over 75 volunteers and tribal members planting 2000 plants. The event also featured traditional foods, educational displays, carvers and more.

Mountains to Sound – Partnership Projects

Mountains to Sound Greenway volunteersMountains to Sound Greenway Trust (MTSGT) is partnering on three projects in the coming months. They are briefly described below. Please see Moutains to Sound spring announcements (pdf) for details.

Help Create an Interpretive Trail at Full Circle Farm

Stewardship Partners will be starting work on an interpretive trail describing the history and stewardship surrounding Full Circle Farm in Carnation.  They are seeking volunteers to help make this project a reality.  Participants should bring work clothes, including rain gear, boots, gloves, water bottles, and shovels (if they have them).  Snacks and coffee will be provided.  To volunteer or to get more info, contact Alex Ko at ak@stewardshippartners.org.

Naturescaping Workshop a Success

Snoqualmie Watershed naturescapingOn March 23rd, 40 Snoqualmie Watershed residents filled the Fall City library to learn how to eradicate weeds, manage wildlife and save money by Naturescaping.  This workshop showed landowners easy ways to create a low maintenance landscape that is healthier for people, pets and the environment.  To complete the effort, participants traveled to a site scheduled for clearing to dig up native plants and replant them in their yards.  The Naturescaping Workshop was offered by Stewardship in Action (SiA), a project of residents, non-profits, King County and the Partnership for Rural King County (PRKC).  SiA is funded in part by an EPA grant.  Learn more at www.PRKC.org.

Raging River Restoration Now Underway

Raging River restorationThe Raging River restoration project marked its start on a rainy day in March.  This 3-year Stewardship in Action project will remove knotweed, ivy, bamboo and holly along 5000 ft of shoreline spanning properties from 3 private landowners and a portion of the King County Natural Area.  PRKC is coordinating across the project partners that include landowners, Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust, Restoration Logistics, King County Water and Land Resources Division and King County Corrections.  The project is funded through a grant from the KCD-Snoqualmie Watershed Forum 2010 Opportunity Fund.  Free native plants are provided by KCD, MTSGT and Baxter Barn.

Bridging Arts and Science – Artist in Residence on Tolt River

Bridging arts and science - Tolt RiverAs part of a public art project funded by 4Culture, Vashon Island-based artist Elizabeth Conner is engaged in a six month artist residency with the King County Water and Land Resources Division (WLR).  Conner is working with WLR staff to more fully understand the restored waterway at the confluence of the Tolt and Snoqualmie Rivers at Carnation. Through wading and walking the river and conversations with King County ecologists, Conner is gaining new physical, philosophical, scientific and poetic understandings of how change is monitored in a floodplain restoration project, why it is important, and how the resulting data will be used.  She is sharing what she learns via a regular blog on the 4Culture website and formulating ways this information might be brought forward to the general public and the communities in the floodplain.  Follow Conner’s posts on the 4Culture site.

Restoration Work Continues on the Tolt River

Tolt River restorationThe Stilly-Snohomish Fisheries Enhancement Task Force is planning their 2011 work calendars and it includes continuing restoration efforts along the Tolt River near Carnation. In 2010, the Task Force partnered with Seattle City Light to implement a three-year weed control and riparian planting project on City Light property with funding from the Salmon Recovery Funding Board.

For 2011, the Task Force will monitor the re-growth of the invasive butterfly bush, blackberry and Scotch broom, and apply treatments as necessary. When response to the treatments is satisfactory, planting opportunities will be developed. For information contact Denise Krownbell at Seattle City Light.

Knotweed Eradication in the Upper Watershed

Knotweed eradication - Upper Snoqualmie WatershedUnder its Healthy Headwaters’ project, the King County Noxious Weed Control Program (KCNWCP) wrapped up a busy summer of knotweed control work in 2010.  Staff visited areas on both the Middle and South Fork Snoqualmie River to treat any regrowing plants, and treated 2 new river miles on the South Fork.   This winter, replanting began on previously treated sites on both forks.  KCNWCP partnered with Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust who installed native plants at Ollalie State Park (on South Fork) and at Tanner Landing (on Middle Fork).  Funding in 2010 came from the KCD and EPA.  KCNWCP will continue working on knotweed control in 2011 and encourages landowners who are interested to attend one of its upcoming workshops on June 20th and July 19th.  For more information contact Frances Lucero.

Future Public Meeting - Snoqualmie River Temperature TMDL

Snoqualmie RiverWater temperatures in the Snoqualmie River are too high in the summer.  The Washington Department of Ecology has been working with several organizations to draft a plan showing what we will all need to do to bring these temperatures down.  Ecology will be asking for public comment on the final draft during a 30-day timeframe through May, and will hold a public meeting in approximately mid-May in Carnation.  Ecology will send an e-mail update to everyone receiving the Snoqualmie Forum E-newsletter once the draft plan is ready for comment.  You can also check Ecology’s WRIA7 webpage under “Snoqualmie Watershed”.

The Snoqualmie Watershed Forum works to protect and restore the health of the SF Skykomish and Snoqualmie Watersheds in harmony with the cultural and community needs of the Valley.

If you would like to be added or removed from the Snoqualmie Watershed Forum mailing list, or if you would like to submit an item for inclusion in the next Snoqualmie Watershed Forum e-newsletter, please contact Maureen Dahlstrom.

Funding for this publication is provided by King Conservation District.