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Remember: Responses to Recent Comments

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Responses to Recent Comments

Anon Said:
“What the heck are those tire tracks doing there? Did someone actually drive through that wet ground? Other questions, can you plant a rain garden at that spot without mechanical loosing of that pounded down soil? How will volunteers remove invasives without access to powerful, appropriate herbicides or specialized equipment? Stream side removal of invasives is not a job for amateurs. It is specialized, difficult work. With 17 jobs lost how will the union feel about using volunteers on such a scale? Buying plants or seed for an area that large will require money, where will that come from? You are doing all this work, where the heck is Friends of the Parks, on spring break?”

First, I cannot speak for Friends of the Allentown Parks but at the moment I know they are working hard to facilitate volunteer/educational programs in the parks and without their work I would not be able to run my litter pickups etc..   I know a lot of my readers would like to see Friends become a powerhouse of advocacy and become more of a Watchdog of the Allentown Parks, perhaps they will.  I don’t know.  I am glad they are able to coordinate and facilitate volunteer programs considering how hard it has been to do volunteer programs the last few years.

As for my planting; first, the area I will be planting will be done so with donated plants.  I am currently working with Edge of the Woods Nursery and other local native plant dealers to secure needed plants.  I will be announcing all the details next week. Stay tuned.  Regarding the soil compaction: I will find out when I attempt the planting.  Of the plants we put in last October, without significant soil aeration, most have survived.  It is my hope to install plants with the sort of root system that helps fight such compaction.  I have been working with botanists, soil scientists, and other people who are highly qualified for such a project to create an informed plant list.

As for the “grow zone” I suggested;  yes, invasive species removal is a very difficult and specialized task.  That said, I know for a fact, there are qualified individuals who would volunteer to do such a thing as well as teach others (Including the short staffed parks employees) how to do what needs to be done.  After the proper education has been given, and a summer (as in this summer) of tours and demonstrations given, I believe that such a task would not be so impossible.  Thing is, what is the alternative?  Attempt a “grow zone” with volunteer instruction and maintenance or continue to keep things as they are?  Of course, I would like to see the Parks Department on a whole reprioritize and make such an issue priority but for as many people out there who feel like me, I am sure even more don’t want to see anything but mowed lawns in parks.  This is a very difficult environment in which ecological restoration that needs to take place is oftentimes ridiculed and considered a waste of time and a violation of park aesthetics.   

Bottom Line:  Begin the work.  Spread information. 

Anon Said:
Why isn't your EAC working on these issues? I don't get it

I cannot, and will not comment on EAC matters here on Remember. 

8 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Protecting the sources of the drinking water for the citizens of Allentown is not a matter of personal landscape preferences. This creek is what is referred to as "source water",isn't it? If this is the case, done deal, conversation over,right?

April 28, 2010 at 12:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your readers should also note that Friends of the Parks has exactly 1/2 a staff person.

April 28, 2010 at 12:58 PM  
Blogger Andrew Kleiner said...

Anonymous said...

Protecting the sources of the drinking water for the citizens of Allentown is not a matter of personal landscape preferences. This creek is what is referred to as "source water",isn't it? If this is the case, done deal, conversation over,right?

You would think so...

April 28, 2010 at 1:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Friends has 1/2 a staff person." Yes, and a board of very significant community elites. When a group chooses to call themselves "Friends of Allentown's Parks", and they do not respond to clear slights against those very same parks, they appear at best ineffectual, at worst hippocritical.

April 28, 2010 at 1:18 PM  
Blogger Andrew Kleiner said...

Anon 1:18,

Perhaps then, folks should direct their vitriol regarding Friends at the board of Friends rather than their hardworking staff of 1/2 a person.

As stated, I am grateful for the overworked 1/2 a person staff and said staff is doing a hell of a job with extremely limited resources and a very strong effort.

April 28, 2010 at 1:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whose blaming the staff? Naturally they do what they are directed to do. Forget about "powerful advocacy". How about just a tiny little bit of advocacy. What did Friends do while Cedar Creek Park was being carved up by blacktop paths? "With friends like these................." They don't seem to have any sense of the critical issues facing Allentown's parks, or any sense of priorities. Not vitriolic, just fact.

April 28, 2010 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger Katie Bee said...

Rain gardens are not just what you see above the ground. They have gravel under the beds so that the water can drain and collect underground, rather than pool on top and become a breeding ground for mosquitos. So, under the bed is gravel, then there's soil, then there's plants, then mulch. At least in the area where the plants are, the soil remains uncompacted.

April 28, 2010 at 7:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OK, so your EAC and FOAP are MIA. SNAFU!

April 28, 2010 at 7:58 PM  

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