About

This journal is about the delightful task of restoring our native forests, grasslands, and streams, and about the everyday people who are making it happen.

I am trying to do a few things here.  First, I just want to put up pictures of everyone out in the woods having fun, doing good work, taking in the morning air and sunshine, and walking around showing each other the latest salamander or millipede we’ve stumbled across.

Second, I want to help make a record of habitat change over time in the places where this restoration work is being done, so volunteers and others can see, clearly and tangibly, just how much they’ve gotten done, how much forest has been liberated from one invasive monoculture or another, how many native plants and critters are returning.

And third, I want to make this record of habitat change rigorous enough that it is of real utility in adaptively managing the restoration effort.  In many places such restoration efforts are so new that there aren’t even maps of such things as, for example, the current extent of invasive periwinkle, French broom, and so forth.  And very often a huge amount of change has been wrought by legions of dedicated volunteers over the course of years, but with very little in the way of photographic documentation;  and so it is impossible to truly convey a visceral sense of what it means to have transformed an old-growth stand of twelve-foot-high invasive French broom back into a lovely, flowery, grassy meadow gazing up at the sun.

It won’t be so easy to do all this at once.  The highly technical stuff will put some people to sleep; but the folks who are putting so much sweat into a given prairie, into a given gully restoration, really want to see how that prairie changes in response to all their work, and that means making time series of videos and images at given known reference points.

Comments, suggestions, and corrections are welcome, either here or in person. Or best of all, out in the field with weed wrench in hand. : – )

My banner photo is of Mount Diablo as seen from Shell Ridge Open Space on a lovely hike in early January of this year.

See you in the woods,

~John

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