Sometimes, the best way to improve your immediate and community environment is to get your hands — or at least your gloves — a little dirty.
That is especially true this time of the year, and the rainy spring this area has been enjoying accommodated just that for Aurora Parks Committee Chair Aissa Bennett.
Aissa teamed up with her sister, Maya Bennett, while collaborating with Pudding River Watershed Council Executive Director Anna Rankin to attain free plants to enrich Aurora's Main Street City Park.
City of Aurora social media sources noted that the trio "(secured) no-cost plants that help create an understory of native species from the Willamette Valley in the forest at the Main Street City Park."
The city's Facebook page itemized 580 plantings: 40 Vine Maple; 15 Serviceberry; 150 Snowberry; 150 Thimbleberry; 200 Salmonberry; 25 Elderberry.
The project fits Aissa Bennett's environs, character and knowledge base.
"I grew up in Aurora and am currently working for a local habitat restoration company," Aissa said. "I requested the specific list of species when I heard from Anna the nursery wanted to donate them locally. We worked together with my sister and a friend of Anna's to plant them in the park."
Aissa said Ash Creek Forest Management of Tigard helped the cause by loaning forestry planting gear, a must given the wet season we've experienced around the region.
"I included some plants specifically because they are edible natives, and I think it'd be a great opportunity for people to connect with the land they're living with," she said.
Their labors drew a warm response on the city's Facebook page, peppered with thoughts like "Great contribution!" "Great work ladies," and "fantastic."
Area resident Becca Rosas Evangelista enthused: "That is so exciting! I can't wait to show my girls next time we're at the park. Thank you for helping create beautiful ecosystems in our community!"
Aurora city page added: "Thanks to all who join us to beautify our parks and other common spaces throughout Aurora!"
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.