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Something new is afoot in the Brentwood-Darlington neighborhood's Hazeltine Park

DAVID F. ASHTON - Here, a few PP&R Youth Conservation Crew members work in Hazeltine Park to build a new split rail fence. Under a new program started by Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R) called "Ecologically Sustainable Landscapes", Hazeltine Park on S.E. Flavel Drive is the second location to get an area of added natural habitat.

"The purpose of a 'Nature Patch' is to create more-diverse landscapes that support native pollinators, increase soil and plant health, and offer educational and stewardship opportunities," said the program's coordinator, Eric Rosewall.

During one of several city visits to Hazeltine Park in July and August – the park is named in honor of the highly-venerated Brentwood-Darlington neighborhood resident Dick Hazeltine – unhealthy trees were removed, land was graded, and amenities were brought in for the Nature Patch.

"As you've seen over the past few weeks, we've begun the transformation of Hazeltine Park with many native plants, and new natural features for neighborhood kids and families to enjoy," Rosewall told THE BEE as he oversaw the work. "We've also created some nice little nature niches, ready to be planted this fall.

On July 31, members of the PP&R Youth Conservation Crew, a group of high school students who joined the program to learn job skills, were installing a split-rail fence.

"Because we've moved some of the boulders that were in front of the park inside, this split rail fence is the new park boundary – which we think is more aesthetically appealing and inviting," Rosewall remarked.

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