Hutt Park volunteers pull for Earth Day

An army of more than 70 neighbors, Cub Scouts, Tree Board members, city councilmembers and others converged on Edmonds’ Hutt Park to celebrate Earth Day Saturday with a gala ivy pull.

The dirt and vines were flying as the volunteers dug, cut and simply yanked the invasive English Ivy (Hedera helix) from the forest understory.

“This is the first step in restoring native vegetation to this area,” explained Jesse Curran, Edmonds Parks Department horticulturalist. “Later this spring we’ll cover the cleared area with 1-3 feet of wood chips. This completely eliminates ivy by ‘cooking’ any remaining live stems and roots, but it will take about two years to completely kill it. Once it’s gone, we’ll come back in and plant with native forest species like ferns, Salal, Oregon grape and Salmonberry.”

The event was sponsored by the City of Edmonds Tree Board, the City of Edmonds and Puget Sound Stewards. Part of EarthCorps, Puget Sound Stewards has been involved in several other projects around town including buffer enhancement around the Edmonds Marsh. According to Edmonds Parks Department Naturalist Jennifer Leach, the organization will continue to work with residents of the Seaview neighborhood to build on these enhancement activities at Hutt Park.

“This is the best turnout we’ve ever had for this kind of event,” beamed Diane Buckshnis, one of the event organizers. “Many are neighbors who actually use this park themselves, and want to take positive action to enhance their community.”

One of those invested in the work was Reed Brown, who got to work while his infant son Kai enjoyed the ride in a baby carrier. “I actually proposed to my wife right over here,” Brown said while pointing to a clearing a few years away. “This is my neighborhood park, and I feel a real sense of ownership with it.”

— Story and photos by Larry Vogel

8 Replies to “Hutt Park volunteers pull for Earth Day”

  1. Great article Larry.

    All the Tree Board Members want to also thank the Chamber of Commerce for posting the event on their website and having members show up to help in this fun event.

    It was inspiring to see all the kids having such a great time and many want to know when the next ivy pull event will occur as we had to cut the event short because of high winds that came about at 11:00.

    This was a great community event and I am grateful for all those that came to share their Earth Day with us.

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    1. It was a really great event! Thanks to all for organizing. Loved the tours Jennifer led. My daughter has been informing me of everything she learned. She also decided she wants to work with her brother, since he’s on the student council, and organize a class event to Free the Trees.
      Looking forward to planning for the next event! #freethetrees

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      1. That’s so great Angela! Your daughter was a delight to have on the tour. And I’m so glad she is inspired to run an event of her own.

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  2. It was a great event. Seeing and hearing the excitement of the young participants who carried the ivy out was a highlight. A neighbor asked me if it was true that some trees were 400 years old. I told her I would check it out. Jennifer, how old is the oldest tree in Hutt Park?

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  3. In addition to the City of Edmonds’ leadership, I also want to recognize the wonderful Seaview neighborhood with special thanks to team leaders Angela Harris and Eric Norenberg. Eric is Den Dad of Den 1, Pack 76 Cub Scouts and help came from the cub scouts and their parents. Fun time was had by all!

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  4. Thanks to everyone who came out to help! You all made it a GREAT event. Barbara, a few of the trees in the park are 600-700 years old.

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