The Vegetation Committee gets to work!

On June 27, 2011 the vegetation committee went to the site for some baseline readings.


The water standing on the mesquite tree is dried up.   The water level next to the berm around the mesquite tree is shown on the shovel.   Water is going from 1 to 2.   Temp 96, no wind.

see the wet part of the shovel for water level


Vegetation Committee Report – June 27, 2011      2 hour Examination/Inventory conducted by:

Susan Penney, Mary Fenton, and Barbara Novovitch. Also Ellen Weinacht.

  • Aim to save the large, specimen Mesquite tree at east-side parking area at Sandia Springs Wetlands, which was standing in water two days prior. The dirt berm surrounding the tree will be reinforced with additional dirt. In addition, it is the Vegetation Committee’s recommendation that additional dirt not be added on top of the Mesquite’s roots. Instead of adding additional dirt on top of the wet Mesquite roots, chipped mulch was considered. (Barbara Novovitch has 4 bags of live oak/pine chips/leaves to bring at next visit).  
  • The Vegetation Committee is attempting to inventory vegetation at the site. The primary plants known to us are Mesquite, Bermuda grass, Sedge, Johnson Grass, Trompillo, Russian Thistle (tumbleweed), Milk Thistle (member of the Asteracea family) as well as several plants yet to be identified. One plant in particular, which is yet unidentified, is crowding the water canal; it has a striated stem, yet is not Russian Thistle.
  • Three Mesquite trees inside Unit 2 were girdled near the ground level – these trees were also measured and marked with hot pink flagging tape. The Vegetation Committee thinks that the complete girdling of the plant might cause the plants to die. We also think that submerged Mesquite trees will eventually die too. We would like to wait and see the results of this practice.
  • The Vegetation Committee favors waiting a month to give girdling time to affect mesquite. So, please do not cut or trim any flagged trees. If the flagged plants do not indicate decline, at that time we will consider possible chemical use. We believe that neither the Vegetation Committee nor the Water Committee favor use of chemicals in retarding or eliminating the growth of mesquite and other plants. However, if and when chemicals are to be used, we want to thoroughly investigate which chemicals to use and their anticipated effect. Also, we prefer NO use of chemicals in Unit 1, which is upstream of Unit 2.
  • Mary Fenton will investigate getting cuttings from local cottonwoods of good genetic trees, to be added to cottonwoods already planted.
  • It is our recommendation that all committees forward every report to the team chairmen, at which time they can forward it to the members of their respective committee.
  • Inspection of the newly planted Cottonwoods indicated that the dirt was wet and growth was seen at the base of the trees. The Vegetation Committee will be checking the site again within 1 month – possibly on July 22 or July 24? We welcome any and all to come along.
  • Felicia will be asked to research the chemical vs. mechanical control of Mesquite and Sedge. Susan will seek identification of the striated plant clogging the canel. The Vegetation Committee will be considering what other plants should be in the Sandia Spring Wetland area and what might be introduced. Mary Fenton will be checking with a friend in N. M. who recently restored a wetland area on her property for possible guidance.
  • The Vegetation Committee will also be researching what plants and/or trees will be best for wildlife – both as a source of food and as a source of shelter.

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