Introduction:Bonesteele upland prairie is a Heritage Park located amongst the gently rounded Waldo Hills of Marion County. As recently as the early 1800's, Bonesteele supported grasslands and open oak savannah. Since then, Bonesteele has been planted with cultivated grasses and used as a pasture. Currently, Bonesteele is in the process of re-creation. The Park supports a cultivated commercial crop, a late-seral deciduous forest and a newly planted upland prairie. On September 27 2000, approximately one acre of Bonesteele Park was planted with seed from one of the few, remaining upland prairies in the Willamette Valley, Shoulder to Shoulder Farms in Wren. The weather was warm and sunny with very little wind.
The goals of Bonesteele Prairie are 1) to establish a native grassland community and 2) to promote the long-term success of Willamette Valley restoration. The near-term objectives are 1) to establish reproductively viable populations of genetically local native plants 2) to provide a relocation site for locally-salvaged plants, and 3) to exclude aggressive exotic plants.
Planting in Fall 2000This is the first year of intensive seeding at Bonesteele. After collecting seed during the summer of 2000, we acquired enough material to plant approximately 1 acre at a seeding rate of 10 pounds per acre. We selected Sections A and B to plant in the fall of 2000. Sections C, D and E, which remain unplanted, have received treatments for control and suppression of weeds. These areas will be planted to native prairie as seeds become available. Our planting is designed as a Demonstration Project without full replication and statistical testing. This approach will allow us to determine the relative success of our planting methods and serve to guide future restoration efforts at Bonesteele Prairie, given a limited amount of available seed.
Test Sections (see attached map)Section A: 0.2 acres located south of the parking strip Section B: 0.6 acres of planting area located north of the parking lot, east and west of mature oak Section C: 0.3 acres located between the parking lot and west property lineSection D: 0.8 acres located north of C, and south of commercial crop along the western borderSection E: 1.1 acres immediately adjacent to Section B, which contains oak seedlings
Section A: Roadside Hydro-seeding Section A is geographically isolated from the Experimental Area, resulting in micro-site conditions that are hotter and drier. This section is surrounded by a gravel parking lot on 3 sides and an asphalt road on the 4th side, surfaces which absorb and re-radiate heat. To account for these differences in site conditions, Section A has been treated independently from Section B.
The proximity of Section A to the road provides us with an excellent opportunity test hydro-seeding techniques for applying native plants to roadside areas, an important issue facing Roadside Vegetation Management in Marion County. The planting design has been developed to concur with new roadside re-vegetation protocols for Marion County. Results from planting tests in Section A will be compiled with county-wide data to test the efficacy of hydro-seeding along roadsides.
Section A PretreatmentThe pre-sowing treatment of Section A differs from the other areas because it 1) has never been burned and 2) has received solarization.
Section A Planting Design:On October 12, 2000, the Open Mix seed from Shoulder to Shoulder Farms was applied to Section A using a hydro-seeder. Section A was divided into 3 equal areas measuring 68' X 32'. Each area received 14.5 oz of seed. Three seeding trials were applied in a random design: 1) seed was hand broadcast into Plot 4 then covered with hydro-mulch, 2) seed was mixed into the hydro-seed mulch and applied to Plot 5, and 3) seed was mixed with 16-16-16 fertilizer and applied to Plot 3 with the hydro-seed mulch.
Section A Monitoring planWe will monitor Section A for density and occurrence of both native plants and exotic plants using cover estimates. The number, size and permanence of monitoring plots will be determined by on-the-ground variability. Section B: Experimental SowingThe size and shape of Section B was determined by the amount of seed available to plant. We used a seeding rate of 10 pounds of seed per acre. We had 2 seed types available, pre-mixed and individually mixed, to test drilling verses broadcast seeding. The individually mixed seed was composed of single-taxon seed that was collected and cleaned separately before being mixed. Because these seeds had been thoroughly cleaned, they were suitable for use in a seed drill.
The pre-mixed seed contained seeds of many taxa growing together at Shoulder to Shoulder Farms, which were collected into the same bag. The pre-mixed seed was collected either 1) from open areas in the prairie as "Open Mix" or 2) from the shaded edges of the prairie as an "Edge Mix". We chose to broadcast the Mixes because they were unsuitable for use in the drill. These results of these trials will determine which planting method we will use on the remaining 25 acres of Bonesteele Prairie.
Section B Pretreatment
Section B Sowing DesignWithin Section B there are two experimental areas, Plot 1 and Plot 2. Plot 1 is located west of Plot 2. Plot 2 includes the mature white oak. Seed was sown into Plot 1 using OSU Hysslop Farm's experimental seed drill courtesy of Daryl Ehernsing. For Plot 1, seed from each species was collected separately, from 2 different locations, cleaned and then mixed together. For Plot 2, the seed was collected as a mix from one source and sown by hand broadcasting.
Plot 1 Sowing DesignPlot 1 occurs in section B, and measures 118 feet on the east-west axis and 85 feet on the north-south axis. The seed sown in Plot 1 either received a smoking treatment or received no treatment. The Untreated Seed was drilled first, in the southern half of the plot. The 8' wide seed drill made six passes, covering a total of 44 feet. The Smoke-Treated Seed was applied to the northern part of the Plot 1, drilled in 5 passes for a total of 41 feet. Any seed that remained in the hopper after drilling was hand broadcast by someone holding the seed in front of a leaf blower and walking up and down the east-west axis of the experimental plot. After all the seed was drilled, a thin layer of bark dust was placed over the eastern ½ of each treatment area.
Plot 1 Smoking seed to induce germination: We used a bee-keep's smoker, filled with detritus from the upland prairie at Shoulder to Shoulder Farms (leaves of grass, oak, and perennials). The seed was placed in the bottom of a plastic storage container. After the smoker was lit and smoking, it was placed inside the storage container with the seeds and allowed to smoke for 3 minutes. Then the smoker was removed and the lid was placed on the container of seed and closed for 5 minutes. The seed was shaken in the container about 2 times per minute to mix with the smoke. Frank Morton of Shoulder to Shoulder Farms recommended pretreating the seeds with smoke because he had used this method to improve germination rates. The following citations discuss using smoke to induce germination.
Keeley JE, Fotheringham CJ, and M Morias. 1999. Reexamining fire suppression impacts on brushland fire regimes. Science Vol 284:1829-1832.
Keeley, JE and CJ Fotheringham. 1998. Mechanism of smoke-induced seed germination in a post-fire chaparral annual. Journal of Ecology 86:27-36.
***** 1998. Smoke-induced seed germination in California chaparral. Ecology 79(7): 2320-2336.
***** 1997. Trace gas emissions and smoke-induced seed germination. Science Vol:276:1248-1251.
Plot 1 Seed Drill:The Untreated native seed mix was drilled first, using the settings: F1, D2, C2, A8. The seed clogged at these settings, due to the large seed size of Danthonia californica. The drill settings were changed for the Smoke-treated seed from F1 to F2. Total seed in each drill bin was 1588 grams or 3.5 pounds. After the drill delivered all the seed that it could, some seed remained in the hopper. This seed was broadcast by hand by someone holding it in front of a leaf blower and walking up and down the east-west axis of the experimental plot.
Seed used in Section B, Plot 1:
Plot 2Plot 2 occurs east of Plot 1 and includes the mature white oak. We did not seed under the drip line of the oak. Beginning on the south side and moving clockwise, Plot 2 is a polygon that measures: 88 x 88 x 100 x 66 x 15 x 45. All of Plot 2 was sown with seed mix from Shoulder to Shoulder Farms in Wren, Oregon. Two mixes were used, "Open Mix" and "Edge Mix". Each mix contained the same taxa, but in different proportions. Only the total weight for each mix is available, the relative proportions of each taxon are unknown. Seed for Plot 2 was broadcast by hand. Seeds were strewn in several directions while wandering across the Plot.
Seeds in "Open Site Mix", listed by proportion, from most to least:
The southern half of Plot 2 was planted with 2.53 pounds of "Open Mix". This plot is a rectangle measuring 88 x 45, except under the drip line of the mature white oak. The northern half of Plot 2 was planted with 3.47 pounds of "Edge Mix", except under the drip-line of the mature white oak. This plot is a polygon measuring 107 X 43 X 100 X 66.
Seeds in "Edge Mix", listed by proportion from most to least.
Section CSection C was treated for control and suppression of weeds, and will be planted as seeds become available. Section C was burned on 1 September 2000, roto-tilled and covered in clear plastic. Photos are available at /parks/bonesteele/images/burn Section C Pretreatment
Section D Section D was treated for control and suppression of weeds and will be planted as seeds become available.Section D Pretreatment
Section D Sowing for weed reductionSection D covers 9000 ft2. During 1998-2000, Section D was treated to eliminate weeds. Since native seed material was not available to restore this Section in 2000, a cover crop was planted to continue the regime of weed suppression. The cover crops selected were crimson clover and winter wheat. Winter wheat cereal grain (without biocide) was drilled first, drilled perpendicular to the slope in an approximate east-to-west direction at a rate of 105 lbs/acre and settings of F2 B6 C2 D1. Crimson clover was drilled second, parallel to the slope at a rate of 13.5 lbs/acre. Drill settings used were: F1, D1, C1, A8.
Section E Section E received treatment for control and suppression of weeds and will be planted as seeds become available. Pretreatment Section E
Section E contains several white oak seedlings, which sprouted following the 1998 burn of Bonesteele. In Fall 2000, this area was covered with 3 tons of native straw of meadow barley (Hordeum brachyantherum) and blue wildrye (Elymus glaucus).