2013 Year in Review. Grants Awarded in 2013

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1 2013 Year in Review In 2013, the Tryon Creek Watershed Council continued to grow and completed several solid restoration projects. Our monitoring program finished its first year and served as a great pilot project while highlighting some issues including high bacteria levels. Several dedicated volunteer mentors took leadership roles, proving the importance of our mentor program for our council's capacity. New restoration projects funded are filling in the gaps between existing restoration sites and creating solid areas of restored habitat. Organizationally, we have gone through important changes as well. Successful board recruitment and groundwork for getting our own 501(c)3 nonprofit status were key this year. Grants Awarded in 2013 Clackamas County Soil and Water Conservation District Partner Funds West Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District Partner Funds Deer Creek IV Native Plant Propagation Program Invasive Plant Management Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board Deer Creek IV Deer-Coyote Creek Pasadena Greenspace BES CWSP Mentorship Program SWNI 2013 Watershed-wide event Network of Oregon Watershed Councils Pedalpalooza and Stewardship Tours

2 Organizational Capacity Building Strong organizational capacity-building of 2012's strategic plan, policy development, and budgeting built the framework for growth in Early in the year we saw significant challenges facing us: two key board leaders were to leave, one for sabbatical and another for a job out of the area, we needed a board treasurer, our location and fiscal sponsor were to be lost at the end of the year, and a key partner experienced major internal upheaval. We rose to these challenges with successful board recruitment, including a fantastic and dedicated new treasurer and secretary and three additional new board members that have already proven to be great leaders. We helped our partner weather their transition and the fiscal sponsorship and location were resolved. In addition, we have made the decision to become our own 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and have begun this process. During 2013 we have increased our annual budget, fine-tuned our operations, and added benefits and a salary increase to the coordinator's position. Fundraising In 2013 we repeated our success with the bare-root pre-order plant sale, selling over 2000 plants with around $2,500 profit. We also held an on-line auction in November with donated items such as nature walks, dinners, and outdoor equipment. This raised around $2500 as well. Sincere thanks go out to all of the individuals and businesses that have donated funds, items, and experiences to the watershed council and our fundraisers. Monitoring Program Our volunteer monitoring program, started in summer of 2012, tracks the overall effectiveness of restoration in our watershed and is meant to establish a baseline characterization of the watershed. In 2013, we focused on refinement of our program and had the opportunity to explore the issue of high bacteria levels in Nettle creek in more depth. Several types of monitoring take place. Volunteers conduct an annual basic habitat survey using the protocol designed by the Environmental Protection Agency and used also by Portland's Bureau of Environmental Services (BES), photopoint, and macroinvertebrate monitoring at selected reaches. Monthly temperature, bacteria, and turbidity samples are collected. Aspects of the program are taken on by individuals or teams. For instance, there is a monthly grab sample team, a lab team, a data entry team, and an individual that takes on the continuous temperature monitoring. Annual training is supplemented by shadowing by the

3 coordinator or another experienced professional and duplicate data collection at least once a year. Continuous temperature data is collected in many reaches. We hoped to add storm monitoring to our protocols but had insufficient resources to do so. USFWS conducts fish sampling throughout the watershed including pit tagging and spawning surveys to complement this data. USFWS and TCWC will jointly evaluate the results which, among other things, will be used to direct restoration projects and evaluate successes in the long term. Data will also be provided to Portland BES and to Oregon Department of Environmental Quality. Habitat monitoring included measuring the depth of the stream's thalweg at regular intervals. High bacteria levels were present at many sites, especially in Nettle Creek. The TMDL (Clean Water Act mandated levels set by OR Dept. of Environmental Quality) allowable levels are routinely violated for E. coli, which is an indicator of presence of fecal matter from animals or humans. Levels are so high, in fact, that often the test used (IDEXX Colilert 24) is maxed out at the highest level measurable. This pollution could be due to leaky sewer pipes, septic tanks, or animals including domestic cats or dogs or birds such as geese. We were able to work with a student volunteer who did a detailed sampling of Nettle Creek in February 2013 to explore the problem further. Her findings suggested that the possibility of septic source should be examined due to the proximity of the apparent source to a Lake

4 Oswego neighborhood still using septic. Other issues that we observed were closely related to the urbanization of the upper watershed. The creek is very flashy, due in part to the predominance of impervious surfaces and loss of top soil and functioning upland habitats. These high flows impact the creek by increasing erosion, adding to the pollutants washed into the creek and causing high turbidity levels. Riparian Vegetation Restoration Projects MENTOR PROGRAM The Urban Watershed Restoration Mentor program, funded by the BES Community Watershed Stewardship Program and West Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District (WMSWCD), is key to our success working with many small private properties in our watershed. Since 2008, trained volunteer Mentors from the community assist and advise landowners with completing streamside restoration projects, native gardening, and stormwater management. In 2013 we continued our partnership with WMSWCD, who led the training component of the program. Volunteers adopted sites at the beginning of the program. Through 6 months of classes, they learned how to do basic site assessment, make a native planting plan, identify and treat invasive species, stormwater management basics, and how to make use of available resources and partners available. Each mentor took their site through the restoration planning process and at the end of the program was able to provide at a minimum a basic restoration plan. Many of them also led volunteer work parties and continued to work with their site after completion of the program. In Tryon Creek, at least seven mentors were very active, producing good plans and following up with site leadership. These sites are initially identified through outreach to landowners of riparian areas in Tryon Creek's watershed, with a focus on key corridor areas and properties adjacent to existing restoration sites. In 2013, around 20 such sites were visited, several of which will be new restoration projects funded by WMSWCD and the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (OWEB). Our program also supports sites that do not need grant-funding by supplying technical advice, plants, and some invasive species control assistance. 5,000 native plants installed 20 landowner site visits 25 properties planted 7 Mentors in Tryon

5 QUAIL CREEK TCWC Coordinator Corrina Chase and volutneer from Volunteer Vixens planting natives and removing ivy at Quail Creek in 2013 This project, started in Fall of 2012 and funded by WMSWCD, restored the riparian areas of 6 adjacent properties on Quail Creek. The project area covers around 0.7 acres and is across the creek from a SOLV project, so the work will complement existing efforts. Invasive species including English ivy, laurel, Himalayan blackberries, periwinkle, lesser celendine, holly, and bamboo were removed by a combination of mechancial and herbicide methods. These were replaced with native species and complemented with erosion control methods in some areas. The work was done through a combination of volunteer and contracted student crew power. They plantings were highly successful and only a small amount of infilling will be done in winter of to complete the project. Improving the habitat here will improve stream conditions downstream as water quality improves and inputs of invasive species decrease.

6 The landowners are not the only parties to benefit from this project. A popular trail runs adjacent to the site; hundreds of pedestrians will enjoy the improvement and have the opportunity to learn about the project. We included this site on our June Pedalpalooza bicycle-powered restoration site tour. SPRING GARDEN Immediately downstream from a BESsponsored project daylighting the stream into a series of wetland swamps, this project is a standard riparian revegetation project. Two property owners share a small swale that has been taken over with Himalayan blackberry, English ivy, and other invasive plants. This site is funded by an OWEB Small Grant and was to be managed by a SOLVE Green Team. This project suffered a delay when SOLVE backed out of the project. The Tryon Creek Watershed Council (TCWC) took over project management, and a volunteer mentor stepped forward at the end of the year. In 2012, contractors removed the laurel and holly and treated the stumps to prevent regrowth. A small volunteer crew has planted willow and other species in areas that were free enough of invasives to be planted. Blackberry removal and some plantings of TCWC nursery stock were done in Winter of will see completion of blackberry removal and plantings. Erosion control materials will be placed to prevent soil loss over the winter. TCWC Coordinator Corrina Chase plants a Douglas fir tree at Spring Garden TRYON LIFE COMMUNITY FARM This project, funded by WMSWCD, involves the conversion of a large area of thick Himalayan blackberries and an area of thick garlic mustard at the Tryon Life Community Farm (TLC Farm) into medicinal native plant educational garden and forest habitat. Immediate ecological

7 benefits of the project include invasive species removal, increased riparian shade, and filtration of animal waste. Along the spring, native wetland plants will be planted to slow flows, filter pollutants, and decrease erosion. This site is an organic farm so herbicides will not be used. Instead, the farms goats will be used to graze blackberry regrowth after the blackberries have been cut. Long term effects will include lessened impact of invasive species on adjacent land, including encroachment on the Tryon Creek State Park, increased and improved habitat and biodiversity, and improved water quality to the spring and downstream Tryon Creek. Environmental education aided by this project is another long term benefit that is harder to quantify in terms of ecological impact, but is very important. Working with a large balckberry patch with all mechanical means and tepid landowner involvement make this a challenging project. Lewis and Clark and University of Portland Freshmen assisted in blackberry removal at the Tryon Life Community Farm Restoration Project, September MEADOWVIEW HOA COMMON AREA This project, funded by an OWEB Small Grant and started in the Fall of 2012, removed roughly 1.5 acres of invasive species and replanted with native trees and shrubs in the upland and riparian areas surrounding Park Creek within the Meadowview HOA common space. The expected outcomes of the project were habitat restoration, outreach, and

8 education. Critical upland and riparian habitat along Park Creek was improved through the project. Additionally, the landowner and TCWC will use the project as a demonstration and incentive for the 26 properties surrounding the project site to practice habitat friendly techniques that include using native plants and controlling stormwater. Volunteers plant trees and shrubs on the difficult slope at Meadowview in the winter of The removal of blackberry, clematis, and ivy in the riparian area and from mature trees have protected existing native trees and is allowing native shrubs and plants to become established. English holly and English laurel were also scattered throughout the site and were cleared to make way for native vegetation. When mature, native trees will shade the stream and reduce water temperatures. They will also help ensure a stable source of large wood for future recruitment into the stream. Invasive removal, erosion control installation, and native planting focused on deep-rooted trees and shrubs to help decrease fine sediment runoff into the stream and reduce upland erosion potential. Finally, the project

9 seeks to address the overall lack of biodiversity in the project area. Invasive removal along with replanting focused on a wide variety of native plants to help establish diversity in plant life and will also attract a wider variety of wildlife. DEER CREEK Deer Creek meets Tryon Creek in Marshall Park and has its headwaters in South Burlingame. TCWC has done a series of restoration projects here, and with the most recent new projects, coverage within the primary creek corridor is nearly 50%. This subwatershed has been dominated by an understory of English ivy with presence of clematis, yellow archangel, Japanese knotweed, lesser celandine, holly, and laurel as well. While there are some large trees, the dominance of invasives has prevented understory development or new saplings from becoming established. Past projects included Deer Creek Phases 1-3. In 2013 we developed and received grants to begin restoration on a nine property site ( Deer IV ) on either side of Deer 1 and 3 and a grant for the upper portion where Deer and Coyote creek Torrey Lindbo and exchange students helped clear ivy at the Deer-Coyote site as part of our Watershed Wide Event. join just below Taylor's Ferry road. The Deer IV project includes two sites that have had work done prior to grant receipt. Volunteer mentors have helped Karen Clark begin to clear her ivy and plant some trees. Her downstream neighbor Debbie Finney has been clearing

10 ivy; TCWC supplied her with plants in the winter of The sites in the Deer-Coyote Creek project vary in landowner stewardship, ranging from a site that has seen 40 years of ivy control and plantings done by the landowner to a site that has been almost completely neglected. These grants are funded by WMSWCD and OWEB. Nettle Creek Stone Bridge Project Iron Mountain Trail crosses Nettle Creek on the Stone Bridge, a cement culvert adorned with a stone wall. The culvert is undersized, creating a severe erosion problem and fish passage barrier. Originally replacement was planned for 2013, but due to heavy rains in September the project was postponed. It will be completed during the in-stream-work period between July and September of Tryon Creek Watershed Wide Event Carl Axelsen, TCWC Board president, led the Arnold Creek work party for WWE. This fifth annual Watershed Wide Event, held in April 2013, featured restoration work parties at 13 individual sites. The event was partially funded by Southwest Neighborhoods, Inc. and the Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement. Attendance was 110, including 30 youth from the School Assistance for Refugee Newcomers Program. Around 15 bags of garlic mustard were pulled and disposed of and around 400 native plants were successfully installed. Himalayan blackberry, ivy, and other invasive plants were also removed from sites.

11 TCWC Native Plant Nursery Burmese and Karen SAFRN students help with plant propagation. They celebrated the day of festival of colors with red chalk dust on their cheeks. Many of the plants that are used in TCWC restoration projects come from our own native plant nusery. Some plants are propagated from cuttings by volunteers such as the School Assistance for Refugee Newcomers (SAFRN) group of students or FOTC classes. We also use the nursery to hold extra bare root plants that are leftover from large orders or donated from nurseries late in the season. Western wahoo is easily propagated from stock in the park but is quite difficult to source from commercial nurseries. It grows especially well in the Tryon Creek watershed but is rare elsewhere. The nursery serves dual purpose of providing plants and match for restoration projects along with educational value for participants of learning plant propagation and native plant winter twig identification.

12 2013 Budget Figures 2013 Budgeted Expenses by Category 2013 Budgeted Expenses by Project Total Budgeted $185,904 Total Budgeted $185,904 Contracted $103,689 Operations (includes SWCD Funds) $31,524 Communication $480 OWEB Monitoring $4,919 Insurance $1,288 Quail Creek $6708 Payroll $44,809 Printing $207 Meadowview 2/10/14 SWNI WWE 2013 $8380 $650 Supplies & materials $32,577 Spring Garden $5678 Transportation $1,353 TLC Farm $8900 Training/conferen ces $500 CWSP Mentor $7045 Fiscal Administration Fee $1,000 Invasives $6000 CWSP Mentor $5000 Stone Bridge $ Tours $1100

13 Partners' activities in the Watershed City of Portland Bureau of Environmental Services Completed construction of the Multnomah Arts Center Parking Lot Stormwater Retrofit. Three vegetated stormwater management facilities detain and treat stormwater runoff from approximately 28,650 square feet of impervious area. Completed in August Completed 90 percent design for Interstate 5 at SW 26th Avenue Water Quality Facility to treat 26 acres of existing impervious area (in partnership with ODOT). Construction scheduled for Completed 60 percent design for roadside drainage (ditch) and shoulder improvements on SW Stephenson between SW 35th and SW Boones Ferry Road. Construction is scheduled for Completed construction of a storm pipe daylighting project in Spring Garden Park in the upper Tryon Creek Watershed. Construction completed in fall Secured funding for a Green Street curb extension along SW Huber at Quail Post Road. Design started in summer Construction is planned for Completed design of 6 vegetated stormwater greenstreets along SW Multnomah Boulevard between SW 34th and SW 40th. Construction is planned for Design for Tryon Outfall replacement on Falling Creek. Construction planned for May Project will reduce erosion to stream bank and revegetate area. Began design of culvert replacement at SW Boonesferry Road for fish passage and conveyance. Survey and wetland delineation complete. Engineering design began fall Began design for the Lower Tryon Stabilization project in Tryon Creek State Natural Area and at the Tryon confluence with the Willamette River. Some construction will occur in summer 2014 the remainder likely in Through BES Watershed Revegetation Program, planted 12,075 plants on 22.4 acres. This included 2,200 deciduous trees, 1,825 coniferous trees, and 8,050 shrubs. BES supported SOLV s Team Up for Watershed Health to engage community volunteers in riparian area restoration. The program conducted stream restoration projects and planted 110 trees, removed 20,000 square feet of invasive vegetation,

14 treated knotweed, and educated youth about restoration. Provided grants to three community projects: $7,660 Tryon Creek Watershed Council Restoration Mentors $200 Friends of Tryon Creek State Park $50 Arnold Creek restoration West Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District Japanese knotweed program: The conservation district is working with 7 new landowners on knotweed control, for a combined total of 14 sites that are actively being managed by WMSWCD in the watershed! Knotweed was found infesting over a total of 20,000 square feet of riparian habitat and other natural areas, with percent cover totaling over 8000 sq feet. Sites controlled last year were in much better shape this year. The conservation district works closely with the watershed council to identify new infestations and provide resources to restore infested areas. The Englewood Restoration Project is a 10 acre, multiple landowner conservation project at the western edge of Tryon Creek State Park adjacent to Park Creek. Invasive species were cleared during two seasons of site preparations that tackled ivy, blackberry, holly, laurel and garlic mustard. More than 2500 native trees and shrubs will be planted this spring (February 2014). Components of the planting project include reforestation, wildlife enhancement, pollinator hedgerows and meadowscaping.

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