Copeland Run

Making this planet healthier and happier one plant at a time!

Copeland Run, north of Pennsylvania Avenue

On a gorgeous Saturday, April 23rd, 2022,  in honor of International Earth Day, ROR partnered with Beaver Creek Elementary to plant 316 native trees and shrubs on a short stretch of Copeland Run. Over thirty volunteers, parents, children, local community members, ROR volunteers and more, dedicated their morning to plant over 19 species to enhance the life of the watershed. We were able to plant on both sides of the creek with the following species of trees and shrubs:

American CranberrybushViburnum trilobumAmerican BeechFagus grandifolia
Arrowwood ViburnumViburnum dentatumBasswoodTilia americana
Highbush BlueberryVaccinium corymbosumBlack OakQuercus velutina
Pussy WillowSalix discolorHackberryCeltis occidentalis
Silky DogwoodCornus amomumPersimmonDiospyros virginana
SpicebushLindera benzoinPin OakQuercus palustris
WinterberryIlex verticillataRed MapleAcer rubrum
ServiceberryAmelanchier canadensisSilver MapleAcer saccharinum
Swamp White OakQuercus bicolor
SycamorePlatanus occidentalis
Black WillowSalix nigra
Beaver Creek Elementary side of Copeland Run after Spring 2022 planting

This idea sparked through a conversation one of our ROR team had with a local resident while out enjoying Beaver Creek Elementary’ s many incredible outdoor learning spaces. The resident expressed concern as to the future of the area, the forest, and Beaver Creek.  After a site visit and discussions internally as a team, a ROR member then attended the next PTO meeting at Beaver Creek Elementary and shared ROR’s proposal to enhance the riparian zone along both sides of Copeland Run. The PTO was very excited about the potential and gave their enthusiastic support. In recent years, this section of Copeland Run had suffered the loss of many ash trees due to the emerald ash borer. Copeland Run also needed a larger buffer or streamside forest (from 15′ to 50 ‘) to protect the health of this creek which runs to Beaver Creek, a tributary of the East Branch of the Brandywine.

Essential for the survival of the plants, ROR volunteers helped to maintain the planting over the following months, removing any invasive vines that came into the tree shelters, replanting trees and shrubs that didn’t make it,  and other needed post-care tasks.  As for the students of Beaver Creek Elementary? They are a part of the maintenance too! One hundred fifth graders visited the plants in May 2022 to do a ‘health check,’ as part of a program given by educators at the Stroud Water Research Center.  Each plant has an ID tag with species name (common and scientific) in addition to images of the plant’s leaves and bark. Students measured the height of each plant, checking to see if it was dead or alive. This effort is coming full circle in creating future stream stewards! Stop by to check out the planting (on both sides of the creek) and join us for the next volunteer opportunity which will be in April 2023 on Earth Day, 1 year after this planting! Thanks a million to all the volunteers, students, and teachers, for making this planet healthier and happier one plant at a time!

Thanks to all the volunteers who have supported this effort over the years! We appreciate you!

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