The dark times are with us with short days, long nights, and economic challenges near and far. Are you making time for rest and simple pleasures - watching birds at your feeder, reading a good book, enjoying local musicians or participating in Nature Walks through the winter landscape? Perhaps you are enjoying mulled local cider, local kale and winter squash, or other culinary pleasures.
Progress is happening around the County - at schools, parks, forests and farms. Students at five elementary and middle schools are raising trout eggs to fingerling size to stock local streams. The County’s Division of Parks and Recreation is beginning a linear rain garden at Fountain Rock Park in order to improve water quality and increase habitat for birds and butterflies. The Frederick Forestry Board has gathered local landowners together to plan for gypsy moth control in order to limit defoliation and mortality among oak and other hardwood trees. And Hope Green, a farmer in the Adamstown area has partnered with the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and its volunteers to plant native trees along the stream running through her property. She has also partnered with Hedgeapple Farm in Buckeystown to pasture some of its grass fed beef.
Funding commitments trickle in. You’ll be pleased to hear that $1 million in Rural Legacy funding has been committed to Frederick County for protecting farmland. And consider our neighbors upstream in nearby Adams County, PA. Their citizens just passed a bond issue to generate $10 million for conservation and preservation!
We are learning as we go. A new partnership with the Center for Watershed Protection will help the County analyze the current forest cover in the Linganore watershed and the forest cover resulting from full build out under the comprehensive plan. With this information, a tree canopy goal will be proposed for adoption along with priority parcels for reforestation. Alliance partners including county staff from schools, parks, planning and watershed management joined their counterparts from all over the Potomac watershed for a Potomac Watershed Partnership Information Exchange on December 10th.
Check out the many interesting workshops and seminars coming up in January and February. Learn about managing bugs and blights, connecting with local food, and how to be a volunteer Stream Wader, among other options. Bring your friends and family members along and help improve the health of Frederick County’s watersheds!
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