A 27 acre portion of a 115 acre parcel of the Willamette River Greenway, just north of Corvallis, is the site of a demonstration project for riparian forest restoration practices and future riparian forest ecology studies in a bottomland forest. The Benton SWCD has partnered with OSU Forestry and Natural Resources Extension, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (landowner) and two local farmers and conservationists, Peter Kenagy and Marvin Gilmour, to help demonstrate riparian restoration using a variety of agricultural and forestry techniques.
Different cultural methods will be demonstrated to show successes and failures of various planting densities, differing spatial arrangement of species, irrigated versus non-irrigated and weed control strategies. The Meyer Memorial Trust, as part of the Willamette Special Investment Partnership program, is providing funds for the restoration expenses.
Since the final report was released in 2015, OPRD has been working on:
- Maintaining the site through periodic mowing and targeted spraying to continue to release plants from competition. Some of the plants onsite are free to grow, others are not there yet (primarily due to continued deer browse).
- Infill as needed with cuttings and bare root plants in areas with poor woody plant survival.
- Crews survey and treat ivy, clematis and other priority invasives in the surrounding mature floodplain forest across the entire OPRD ownership to protect that forest.
- OPRD will broadcast understory forbs and grasses into the planted area in fall 2017 to add diversity.