Exploring Sue French’s Cloquet River Property

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July-August 2014 100 July-August 2014 098

Twelve people came to explore the trail along the Cloquet River on Sue French’s land (three new people joined the tour). Martha Minchak briefly explained how to use the DNR field guide, distributing checklists to classify forest areas and identify plants as we walked. This rural setting provided an abundance of woodland plants in both upland and flood plain. The pollinator & vegetable gardens, hugel mounds, and greenhouse in the yard all supported production of the CSA farm on-site.

Aug 20 Cloquet River Yard Tour With DNR Guide

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Join us for an evening of exploring with members of Wild Ones, strolling through a Cloquet River property with a DNR guide

WHEN: Wed. August 20 at 6:30 – 7:45 pm

WHERE: Sue French’s property (7807 Industrial Road, Saginaw)

Carpool available – leaving the Rose Garden parking lot at 5:30pm
Driving time is 40-45 minutes from the Rose Garden.

“Our property consists of 13 acres of what was once part of the Northern Boreal Forest but was logged at one time and is now in a state of partial recovery/succession. We are on the Cloquet River and have 600 feet of shoreline, and a large part of the area around our house has been cleared and planted, a bit haphazardly by me, with various native plants and used by an organic farmer that runs a small CSA. Over the last couple years we’ve made some hugel mounds that are in various states of development. All of it needs a sense of direction and a plan. I would love to create a more formal butterfly stopover and do more to support the native bees. And understanding how to aid in the restoration of the forest would be so valuable. What are the plants we lost? How can we go about reestablishing them?”

Directions:
1. Take Highway 53 North (toward the Range) to Twig (beyond Pike Lake).
2. Turn left at Twig on County Road 7 or Industrial Road. The Grand Lake Community Center will be on your left.
3. Stay on Co. Rd. 7 (it will curve and straighten out) to the stop sign at Highway 33 (four lane Highway).
4. Cross Highway 33 and continue on Co. Rd. 7 or Industrial Rd for another mile and a half or so to our driveway, the last drive on the right before the river (Cloquet River).

If you cross the river you’ve gone too far. There is a small creek before the river that you’ll cross, but you’ll know the river by the bridge with the red metal arches.

Martha Minchak (DNR) will demonstrate how to use the new DNR field guide for a restoration project, while we tour Sue’s land.

RSVP: only reply to this email if you plan to attend, and especially to carpool.

RAIN – light rain w/out lightening will not be cause for postponement; if hazardous weather upends our plans, someone will send an email by 4:00 with a postponement announcement or call Cathy at 218-724-1196.

Questions…contact Cathy Wood, membership chair

July Event at Dan and Kris’ Lakeside Garden

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Twenty-five people wandered a variety of areas converted to native plantings, especially the prairie boulevard in bloom. Dan Schutte and his wife, Kris, explained the 3-year process of raising plants from seed through to the clearing & planting stages. A surprise was Dan’s monarch house, complete with cocoons; a gift from Kris. Eight new people joined the tour. Several members continued on to weed the Chapter garden at Leif Erickson Park.

Schutte Pless

June Yard Tour

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The yard tour at John Pastor‘s last week was a great success:  perfect weather with 24 people attending.

June 2014 Yard Tour

Tour of John Pastor’s yard.

John explained the front rain/fruit gardens and the backyard veggie gardens.
He discussed plans for the new prairie side yard overlooking Chester Creek.
Mary offered delicious bars and coffee on the porch, then gave a tour of the roof-top garden.

Wild Ones events May 28 PM and May 31 AM

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Happy spring! The marsh marigolds are just starting to bloom in my rain garden, which reminds me it’s time to get out an announcement about two events in May hosted by Wild Ones: Native Plants, Natural Landscapes – Arrowhead Chapter.

  1. Wednesday May 28 will be a great night to gather and meet each other, work in the garden and learn at our chapter community garden located on the Duluth Lakewalk a few blocks east of Fitgers, just across the pedestrian bridge from First Lutheran Church. Bring a lawn chair and dress for the weather. We will provide heavy snacks & lemonade.The schedule for the evening looks like this:

    4:30 – 5:30 garden maintenance early time slot – come one, come all, bring a little weeding hand tool or a big edging shovel or just your gloves and we will provide the weeds to pull and perhaps a plant or two to plant

    5:30 – 6:00 garden tour

    6:00 – 6:30ish Heather Wright Wendel and Carol Andrews will explain the “hugelkultur” concept that can be used to create a type of raised bed for vegetables, orchards (ala Duluth Grill), and could be used for native plants too (http://www.richsoil.com/hugelkultur/ )

    6:30 – 7:30ish another garden maintenance time slot

    See the event page for directions.hugelkultur

  2. The Annual DGFS Plant Sale is coming up May 31, with the official start time of 8:00 AM at the Rose Garden on London Road. In addition to shoppers we need plants to sell and people to help sell or just share information on native plants, their benefits and Wild Ones. Do you have time to help at the sale? Plants you can divide in your yard or spares grown from seed? Please contact us if you answered yes to either question. Thanks to Dan Schutte we will have approx 200 swamp milkweed plants Dan grew from seed for sale at great prices.See the event page for directions.

Gypsy Moth Treatment Proposal

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We recently received an email from Lucia Hunt with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture regarding gypsy moths:

…the gypsy moth is crossing our paths again. We caught a record-setting number of moths last year and 90% of them were trapped in Lake and Cook counties. Not surprisingly, a few have spilled across the border into St. Louis County and the MDA is proposing to manage them by treating them this summer. Please see the attached bulletin for details about the products and the treatments.

Because of the huge number of residents in the proposed treatment area, we are not able to direct mail all affected residents. We’ll be focusing on traditional and social media to get the word out.

To help with this effort, here is the pdf of the proposal that they sent.
Proposal for Gypsy Moth Mgmt St. Louis County

You can find additional information on their website at http://www.mda.state.mn.us/gypsymoth.
Links to the pdf and the website are also on our Learn page.

Thinking of Spring

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More than 25 people came to our February meeting with Jeff West of Boreal Natives to think warm thoughts about gardening and native plants. With the especially cold winter this year, many of us are eager to see green, growing things again. It was a great presentation followed by a very informative question and answer session.

Jeff West of Boreal Natives

Jeff West of Boreal Natives

Be sure to join us on March 26 to learn how to keep the ubiquitous deer population of Duluth from consuming everything you plant.

Eye Candy and Brain Food – February 26 Meeting

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This month’s presentation will be by native plant expert Jeff West, Manager of Boreal Natives – a division of Prairie Restorations Inc, one of the upper Midwest’s first companies to specialize in native plant community restoration.

Jeff will treat our winter-weary eyes to a treat of flower photos, describing many of his favorite native plants, including their growth characteristics and best uses. Following the presentation Jeff will take questions on preparing your planting site, selecting plants, and maintenance.

  • Do you amend soils first, especially clay?
  • What is the best way to kill existing vegetation?
  • How is starting with seed different than live plants?
  • I scattered native plant seeds on the ground last fall; what do I do next?

The meeting is on Wednesday, February 26 at Hartley Nature Center.  Snacks and socializing from 6:30 -7:00PM. The program will begin a 7:00.

Directions can be found on the event page.

Making Natural Dyes – January 22 Meeting

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Just when you thought native plants couldn’t be good for one more thing, what with the habitat they offer for creatures large and small, year-round beauty, foods for the foragers, blooms for the bug eyed and the basic beauty of nature – they go and add to the list.

It is time to kick off the 2014 season of Wild Ones/Hartley educational programs with an all new, never seen before (at least at a Wild Ones event) topic: making natural dyes from local plants.

Debbie Cooter is a weaver and member of the Duluth Fiber Handcrafters Guild, living in Two Harbors. She will be bringing many examples of natural colors to show.

The meeting is this Wednesday, January 22 at Hartley Nature Center. Snacks and socializing from 6:30 -7:00PM. The program will run from 7:00 – 8:15.

Directions are on the event page.

Cost: Hartley Nature Center asks for a $4 goodwill donation from non-members.