This 3-year project supports work in the Park native plant nursery, as well as revegetation projects in the Park. Since project initiation in FY14, funding from the SNP Trust has been used primarily to partially support a seasonal technician to maintain the nursery, plant native species at revegetation sites and to collect native seed.
Since October 1, 2013, approximately 10,000 plants produced in the park nursery have been planted and protected at restoration sites. Another several hundred seedlings have been salvaged from roadside locations and transplanted in the nursery. Seed of 60 native species have been collected in the Park for use in vegetation restoration projects.
This project allowed staff to revegetate sites beyond work funded as part of other projects, such as the SNP Trust-supported Forest Restoration Initiative. These included, among others Hogwallow Flats and a former horse corral at Skyland in need of restoration.
Other noteworthy items:
- Herbaceous species planted a restoration sites are beginning to reproduce and spread
- Trees planted early in the project are now 6’ to 8’ tall and growing out of their protective cages.
- New revegetation projects have been initiated at a number of sites, including at Thornton Gap, Big Meadows Campground and at Dark Hollow Falls.
- Survival of planted tree seedlings and other vegetation continues to be quite high—regularly exceeding 80%.
- Propagation protocols have been developed for a number of species for which little—if any—information existed previously.
- Several small scale experimental trials implemented during this project have helped refine our approach to revegetation, especially for herbaceous species.