NAPS 2003 Marshgrass Planting Nears Completion
This year in the Northern Neck we have seen a remarkable community emphasis on protecting our unique waterway resources. NAPS, Reedville Fishermen’s Museum, Master Gardeners of the Northern Neck, VIMS and various other organizations and individuals have all been working to reinforce community attitudes and actions toward waterway stewardship.
The Chesapeake Bay and our numerous rivers generate a Northumberland shoreline extending nearly 500 miles the longest shoreline of any county in Virginia. Hopefully during the year you have heard at least one of us talk about building a filter between where we live and work and our waterways -- a 500 mile long riparian buffer. Our relationship with the Bay and its tributaries is more than casual.
Last April NAPS and the Master Gardeners of the Northern Neck hosted a coordinated program to learn about Bayscaping and get some hands-on experience with planting a Marshgrass buffer. The NAPS segment of the program involved a seminar by VIMS and hands-on experience with planting marshgrass at a nearby Demonstration Site. Of the 100 plus people who turned out for the overall program, more than 50 attended the Marshgrass Planting Demonstration. The Program was held at Lancaster Middle School in Kilmarnock, and was followed by grass planting at low-tide in Barnes Creek at the end of Bluff Point -- a remote and park-like setting. Boots and trowels were the armor and weapons for the event. A cookout capped a perfect day for those attending.
As a second part of the NAPS Marshgrass project, more than a dozen waterfront property owners have volunteered as Marshgrass Pioneers. Those applying as Pioneers had their sites reviewed by NAPS in terms of their suitability for Marshgrass restoration. Sites with good sun, moderate slope and modest wave action were favored. Selected sites were provided with coconut logs, planting materials and NAPS oversight and assistance. Pioneer activities are about 90% complete at this time. Support for much of this year’s activity came from FishAmerica with funding from NOAA. Our community is alive and working together to improve our environment! The residents of Northumberland County are the ones who make these events possible through your interest and involvement.
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