Clackamas High School Conquers Blackberry

CHS @ Rock Creek October 3rd and 4th

Written by Becca, SOLVE Jesuit Volunteer

Clackamas High School made their first trip out to start work at Rock Creek last week.  Students began the day by playing our ever-fun Riparian Metaphor game.  The game helps to remind students what a good riparian or bank side area should be like.  Students compared different objects to positive aspects of a riparian area such as vegetation to filter out toxins running in, trees with deep roots to hold in soil and having a diverse plant population.

For most of their time though students conquered invasive plants that had taken over the bank side of Rock Creek.  Students worked in two spots on either side of the creek to clear the invasive Armenian or Himalayan blackberry.  While digging up blackberry roots students also discovered some native species including a few garter snakes, a bunch of fuzzy caterpillars and of course some worms.  Trash was also dug up along with blackberry roots including a mattress spring!  Students were so thorough in removing blackberry that we also had to lay down straw on the side of Rock Creek to help prevent erosion.   With most of the vegetation and roots gone from the bank side there is nothing to hold the soil there which could cause a lot of sediment to fall into the stream.  But students laid down straw over the bank to help prevent this process from happening.  Great job Clackamas students- we’ll see you next time at Rock Creek!

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