This spring IAE staff and volunteers, as well as many folks from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, helped over 1700 Willamette daisy plants find a new home at Baskett Slough National Wildlife Refuge (NWR), located about 10 miles west of Salem. It was a perfect day for planting – not too hot, not too cold, and a good time was had by all!
Willamette daisy (Erigeron decumbens) is one of our rarest Willamette Valley prairie species, and is federally recognized as endangered. This species struggles for survival due to loss of habitat and reproductive challenges. There are only a few natural populations remaining, hanging on at some of the Willamette Valley’s prairie habitat remnants. In addition, populations often produce very small quantities of viable seed, which can be a barrier to natural population growth and successful propagation in the greenhouse. However, once seedlings are established and outplanted in suitable habitat, survival rates are relatively high, so we have high hopes for the plants at Baskett Slough NWR.