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The Coves - Woodland and Meadow Naturalization

Project type: 
Community Initiatives Green Funds

The Coves Greenway Gateway project site has been a focus of the Friends of the Coves Subwatershed for several years. This year they established two new naturalization areas with the help of funding from ReForest London and the Canadian Fisheries and Wildlife Improvement Program. The project site is within Greenway Park, adjacent to the Coves Environmentally Significant Area and the Thames River Corridor. The goal of these naturalization areas is to expand and enhance green corridors, increase plant biodiversity and increase diversity of habitat available to native wildlife.  


One 0.3 hectare (0.7 acre) formerly mowed area was planted with 220 bareroot native trees and shrubs and 4 large caliper native trees. The species used were native species typical of nearby moist deciduous forests, such as Sugar maple, Black walnut, Eastern cottonwood, Sycamore, Staghorn sumac and Red osier dogwood.  A 0.1 hectare (0.3 acre) formerly mowed area was planted with 1500 native wildflower, grass and sedge plugs. Herbaceous plants were used to recreate a natural wet/mesic meadow typical of other Coves lowlands. Different elevations were created and planted with a different suite of species to enhance diversity of habitats available.  A few of the 19 species planted include Switch grass, Fox sedge, Bebb's sedge, Joe-pye-weed, Boneset, Wild bergamot, New england aster and Early goldenrod.


This year the project involved over 200 volunteers including seven Grade 7 classes and teachers from Kensal Park Public School, the Chippewas of the Thames Stewardship Rangers and Friends of the Coves Subwatersehed from the community. Friends of the Coves Subwatershed will continue to maintain and add to this project in upcoming years.