Hi River Roaders,
Last week, I ran into Helen and Marney taking a walk in our native plant garden. When I joined RRUUC twenty years ago, Helen and Marney were both very active in the Congregation. Helen asked what we were calling the newly restored garden, and my response was “we really don’t have a good name – sometimes I call it our Native Plant Garden, sometimes our Conservation Area.” Helen said that for many years, it was called “The Springsview Garden”. She described how they “discovered” six springs, and how they would tend to the gravel in the springs every year to make sure you could hear the water flowing. Marney appreciated the extensive native plantings, and she recently donated some wonderful Mountain Mint to be planted on the grounds. Moving forward, I’ll be calling the area “Springsview Garden.”
Over the last couple of months, I added a number of trails to Springsview Garden, which included spreading our recently delivered wood chips. There are five different loops, which can be combined into a large number of unique combinations (Five factorial?). While it’s not a labyrinth, it can function the same way (except you’ll likely to be distracted by bird song and flowers). Let’s take a look at our trails!
The best bench for bird watching overlooks the favorite pool for bird baths. New York ferns are in the foreground, with newly emerged christmas ferns to the right.
The three bridges path, with the heads of the springs to the right.
A new path that runs along our boundary with Walt Whitman High School. The soil here is very dry and fully shaded, but there are some plants here that are found no where else on our site.
The worship circle was previously a “dead end” in our trail. Now it’s an intersection with three connecting trails.
My favorite new trail runs through our wetland. It runs through our grove of paw paw trees and it provides great views up toward the springs. I’m going to call this new trail segment “Paw Paw Passage”, since I always appreciate alliteration.
There’s no bridge over the stream here. You get to step over the water, which is much more fun then taking a bridge. The pool of water, with the exposed roots, is another favorite spot for the birds. There are a number of different sedge species here.
Paw Paw Passage connecting back to the main loop trail. The bench here is also great for bird watching.
The Ravine Trail heading toward River Road.
The newly added trail that runs along River Road and comes out outside the classrooms in the Fellowship Hall wing. This trail follows the path of an long-time trail that followed the perimeter of our property but was abandoned when the Fellowship Hall was built.
I hope you can come take a walk on our newly expanded trail system (OK, a path system).