Getting Things Done

The final sentence of the AmeriCorps pledge is, “I am an AmeriCorps member, and I will get things done.” That is exactly what the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps Gold 5 team has been doing at IAE for the past six weeks, November 7-December 20, 2016. The 12-member team has made incredible contributions to 15 different IAE projects around the Willamette Valley and the Central coast.

Jake Janesch planting early blue violets with 6th graders from the Jane Goodall Environmental Middle School as part of the effort to restore the Oregon silverspot butterfly to Nestucca Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

Planting nectar islands for the Fender’s blue butterfly at Fir Butte in the West Eugene Wetlands

Their achievements include: • Planting 58,103 native seedlings at 11 different sites. • Constructing raised beds and seeding 32,500 plugs for IAE’s new plant materials farm. • Preparing thin-leaved peavine, Kincaid’s lupine, and peacock larkspur seeds for germination by starting their cold stratification. • Pulling scotch broom and unwanted seedling trees four different sites. • Felling and removal of 80 trees from two prairie restoration sites

Barestem biscuitroot ready for planting.

Harris and Chiara and crew constructing a raised bed at the new IAE plant materials farm.

One of the greatest limits to what IAE can accomplish is a shortage of person-power during the busy planting season. These dedicated volunteers greatly increase our capacity to complete our projects, and we are hugely grateful for their efforts. Through rain, snow, and poison oak, they soldiered on with unwavering good attitudes, completing approximately 2,688 volunteer hours between them, and often finishing tasks ahead of schedule. They will be missed as they move on to working Habitat for Humanity in San Francisco, their second stop in their 10 month term of service.

Monique Johnson encounters snowy planting conditions at a restoration site.

Ian Silvernail (IAE) and the AmeriCorps crew trying to get feeling back in their fingers after a rainy day at Nestucca Bay NWR.

IAE recognized the team with superlative awards at our Christmas party. Award categories included “most likely to stay clean while working in a mud puddle”, “most patient”, and “most likely to get poison oak”. A stocking full of candy, cookies, avocados, and “Emergen-C” packets was presented with each award. The team also participated in our white elephant gift exchange, which included such stellar gifts as a 5lb chocolate bar and a much prized Himalayan salt lamp.

The team breaks for lunch at Upper Oak Basin.

Planting pollinator species at Beazell Memorial Forest

Thanks and good luck Team Gold 5!

A final picture with the IAE Sign.