Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Walk on Green Island

On Saturday my sister and I visited the 1055 acre Green Island owned by the McKenzie River Trust just north of Eugene, Oregon.

The island was farmland until about 10 years ago. Now much of it has been restored to native rye grass. There are several different ecosytems on the island including native prairie and oak savannah. 

The island had an amazing assortment of wild flowers, most of which were new to me.

Whatever this is, a coreopsis of some sort perhaps, it certainly is pretty.

Blue-headed Gilia (Gilia capitata).  

Coast Manroot (Marah oreganus) was done blooming and had set fruit.

This is a guess.  Maybe Gold Stars (Crocidium multicaule).

The over-riding vision is to allow the Willamette River to 'act like a living river' and weave and meander and create new channels and gravel beds. All of these things are important for both the health of the river and that of the native fishes. In this spot a channel of the McKenzie River enters the Willamette River.

I'd hoped to ID this orange flower, but have not had any luck.

Common Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

Moth Mullein (Verbascum blattaria).

Speaking of fishes, it certainly is a lovely place to fish.

This plant is a mystery to me.  It was growing near water and the berries are lovely.

An almost blue lupin.
I am guessing that it is Streambank Lupin (Lupinus rivularis).

Unfortunately, Poison Hemlock (Conium maculatum) a non-native invasive still has a strong foot-hold on the island as it likes wet places.  

Much better to have Ocean Spray (Holodiscus discolor) in abundance.

There's a nice view of the Coburg Hills off to the east.
With meadows and rivers, the island has great habitat for birds with 158 species seen since 2000. 

I saw a Willow Flycatcher.

A Cedar Waxwing.

A Great Blue Heron.

There were dozens of nesting boxes and the Tree Swallows had claim to most of them.

Here the river eases around a gravel bed it deposited.

California Poppies (Eschsholzia californica).

They liked living on the hot dry gravel bed.

Notice that they are yellow rather than the more typical orange.

Common Toadflax (Linaria vulgaris)

Such a peaceful and serene setting. 

Douglas's Spiraea (Spiraea douglasii)

Western Morning Glory (Calystegia occidentalis)

Not the best photo, this was an interesting wildflower.

Here's one last Unknown Pretty!

It was hard to say good by to Green Island and the Willamette River.

But good to know this part of the river is alive and healthy.


CalamityJr said...

What a beautiful place to visit. I'd want to find a bench near the water and stitch.

Maggee said...

Oh my! I love this! What a great place to visit! I really must get out more! I know we have great natural spaces... However, it is going to rain again today, tomorrow... all weekend, off and on... which makes it difficult to get out. Meanwhile, loved seeing so many different wild plants! I read California poppy and said to myself, they should be orange. Now I know there is another color! Thanks for sharing! It was a fun field trip! :)