Woodlands Management April 21, 2010


    Attending: Jerry Uhrig, Phil Notestine, George Jackson (council liaison), Cliff Miles, Bob Dewing, Martha Dwyer-Bergman; and MLEC commissioner Margaret Gossett who will be liaison. This is the largest group this year of 2010, however we are in need of more members if anyone knows of persons who would like to join contact Phil.

    Notes from Jerry: In anticipation of the meeting, I did a little survey of a few woodlands locations and the deer exclosures. One thing I did was to remove the barberry along the Birchwood trail that Cliff spotted on the vernal pool outing. Since I was in the barberry mode, I checked on the sled run, where we have had at least three major invasives removal days. Unfortunately, there is still a great deal of the stuff. The main colony is on the right side going up, just before you get to the two vernal pools. Huge patch. Needs major effort before the sled run area just reverts to the mess we had before.

    And of course since everything is running two-three weeks ahead of normal, the garlic mustard is already flowering. I pulled some but only a tiny fraction of what is out there.

    The deer exclosure status is mixed: Exclosure #1: This one is in Wilcox just off Crestview. It is in fine shape. No problems since I patched it up last September.

Exclosure #2: This one is down across from the high school on the right going down to the play fields. Physically, it is in good shape. But invasive winged euonymus is making reappearance. This should not be a surprise to anyone since this area was one of the worst concentrations of the stuff that we had. Dave Fewell, Penny Leman, and I worked one intensive Saturday morning a few years ago cleaning most of it out. So some follow-up work is needed. Students? Exclosure #3: This one is in really bad shape. At least four major breaches have enabled the deer to get at the new seedlings. I'd say that at least half of them have suffered serious deer browse. I repaired a couple of the breaches and will try to fix the others today. Someone needs to make a careful inventory of the status of the seedlings to support the ongoing restoration work. Students?

    Cliff handed out overview on Japanese knotweed.  Included on page 4 is a statement about food value and nutrition (high); that is tastes like rhubarb, but better.

    Morris and Crane project site: Wisteria, garlic mustard, pachysandra and other invasives are in need of removal from the site.  It is now much more manageable. Martha will bring her large clipper for the Saturday project.  Bob will mark the trees that need to be removed by tying a ribbon on dead trees.

     The Boulevard at Boonton.  First of May to give guidance to the scouts on this site.  Trees are going to come from the local nursery.  Dead Trees will remain on site to protect new plantings.  Neighbors will take responsibility of watering of trees in these pocket parks.  These are controlled sites with an understanding of the end of projects. 

    Deer sightings and sign are very scant. Newest deer enclosure has experienced major damage, most probably done by deer or bear.  Seedlings are browsed.  Located at the playfields at the left side near high school. Growth inside vs outside the enclosures:  didn’t see a lot of seedlings other than the ones that the High school freshman planted/reforestation for 4 years study.  Any that are outside of the exclosure have been marked. Martha mentioned that the hunter that was in the sled run on Tower Hill left the plastic bags of bait/food in the woods.

    Understory restoration.  Wilcox Park - Cliff stated that he is looking for Falls Hellabor within skunk cabbage and will send us photos.  Orchids are in town and Cliff is looking for specific types.

    Invasive plants, garlic mustard but there are the returns of native plants.  There are improvements.  There is also a New Jersey organization that is focusing on invasive removal.  Shade Tree has received a $6,000 grant for removal of invasives.

    Deer management we have been asked by an organization to take a supporting stand on deer.

    Boy Scout project two pocket parks near Boonton. Removal of invasives this coming weekend.  The residents have been contacted.

    Vernal pools:  Training with Nancy O’Reilly and Margaret and Phil. Green Frogs Peepers, and tree frogs have been heard and/or seen. Egg mass was seen and we should return to look for tadpoles.  Eggs were hatched.  Back towards the Chimney there were observations.  Turtle – a (probably) Red-eared Slider was seen at Birchwood pathway. These types are southern US in origin, and are widely sold as pets.

    Budget needs to be discussed with Council as to what our moneys are.



Martha Dwyer-Bergman, Scribe

April 21st, 2010