Community volunteers are preparing to resume habitat restoration work along Highway 104 this summer. The volunteer work, under an Adopt-A-Highway agreement with the Washington State Department of Transportation, will continue last year’s successful effort to remove chain-link fencing and an invasive plant (bitter sweet nightshade) that have damaged the wetland and blocked freshwater flows into the Edmonds Marsh-Estuary Wildlife Sanctuary.
Over 40 sections of fence, intertwined with invasive nightshade, were removed last year in the vicinity of the culverts under Highway 104 that connect Shellabarger Creek with the Edmonds Marsh. Community volunteers’ efforts restored the creek channel so it could again flow under the highway into the marsh, rather than flooding the Dayton Street intersection in the winter. However, more fencing and thickets of nightshade remain on both sides of Highway 104. They need to be removed to allow natural circulation of water and prevent the spread of the invasive nightshade that damages wetlands by growing over native plants and trees.
Specific dates for this summer’s volunteer work will be announced once the sites are prepared for access. Community members interested in volunteering should contact firstname.lastname@example.org. In contrast with last year, this summer’s effort will require all volunteers to work in the wetland, some of which is muddy and difficult to transverse.
— Submitted by Joe Scordino, Edmonds Stream Team project leader