(March 14, 2019) - About 70 students from Prescott Elementary School got their hands dirty this month to contribute to clean rivers. They planted about 400 native plants at Senn's Dairy Park in the Parkrose neighborhood in partnership with Environmental Services and Portland Parks & Recreation.
The students learned about the benefits of native plants and habitat restoration and were able to apply their learning at a park in their own neighborhood.
As the students learned, native plants attract birds, butterflies, and beneficial species, provide habitat for wildlife, and help keep our rivers and streams healthy.
Native plants reduce pollution by acting as a sponge - absorbing rainwater and returning that water to the ground where it replenishes soil and groundwater, and in turn helping the plants grow. The alternative is turning rainwater into stormwater - letting rainwater wash over streets where it mixes with motor oil, dirt, grime, pesticide residue and other pollutants that then end up down our storm drains and in our waterways. Native plants and other green infrastructure prevent pollution and add beauty and habitat to our neighborhoods.
Find out about Environmental Services' Clean Rivers Education program.
Find out more about the benefits of native plants and what they look like at www.portlandoregon.gov/bes/nativeplants. If you have an idea for a community planting, see Environmental Services' Native Plant Mini Grants.
People can also get involved in planting natives in local natural areas by connecting with local watershed councils and Portland Parks Stewardship.