Pacific Rim Institute for Environmental Stewardship

PRI promotes the idea that humans, individually and collectively, are stewards, or caretakers, of this Earth, and that as stewards we have the call and responsibility to maintain our home on behalf of others.
Apr 21, 2014

New Sustainble Farming Partnership Helps Prairie

Hello Everyone,

I am excited to share with you news about our new partnership.  A local gentleman will be leasing about five acres on our property in order to plant heirloom grains using his horses.  Not only does having sustainable agriculture on site meld with our mission (to equip people and communities to live sustainably and care for Creation), it will also benefit our prairie restoration efforts.
This is how:  Out of the 100 acres that we plan to eventually restore to prairie, the majority of it is still abandoned agriculture land.  This means that it was once worked for agricultural purposes and what remains are non-native and invasive plants that have taken over.

When a farmer starts working a piece of land, they have to get rid of these invasive species in order to protect their plots.  Since we do not plan to start planting native prairie in some of these spots for many years (restoration is a long process that takes lots of time and money), the big benefit of having a sustainable farmer on the land is that when he leaves, the land will already be void of all the invasives, thus cutting out a step for us that can take anywhere from 2-5 years.

We continue to seek our partnerships that embody our mission and values and further our work in a sustainable way.  Thank you for all your financial support, it has allowed us to make these powerful partnership and continue the critical work of saving one of the endangered ecosystems of the Northwest.


If you find yourself near Whidbey Island over the next two months, please come and visit us! The prairie flowers are beginning to bloom.

Our 5th Annual Prairie Open House will be held from May 8-10, 2014.  There will be daily FREE naturalist tours at 10am, 4pm and 7pm.  On Friday (May 9th) we will have native storytelling with Lou Labombard at 8:00pm.  On Saturday (which is also the day of Coupeville's Penn Cove Water Festival with Native American Canoe Races), we will have a special tour at 2:15p with guests from the Sammish nation who will share why the prairie was so critical to the Native Americans for thousands of years.

Any other time that you come, you can walk the trails or request a tour for your group.  We now have tours of the prairie with our CEO on the first and third Thursdays of each month at 5:30pm.

If you live closer to the Olympia area, there is another opportunity to see prairie work with several of our South Sound partners.  Their Prairie Days celebration is also on May 10th and you can find more information here http://prairieappreciationday.org/


The prairie in bloom is a beautiful site to see.

Thank you again for all your support!


Links:

Dec 19, 2013

8 Acres on way to restored prairie

Seth spreading native grass seed by hand
Seth spreading native grass seed by hand

Seth Luginbill, our Land Steward, completed the sowing of native Roemer's fescue seed across eight acres adjacent to our 5 acre prairie remnant last week!  For four years we have prepared this land for this moment by clearing tons of debris (with amazing volunteers!) mowing, burning, and weed control.  Most of this work has been funded by the USDA – Natural Resources Conservation Service and individual donors (LIKE YOU).  Seth has done a wonderful job in overseeing this entire process.

Our work is far from finished, but it is a wonderful thing to celebrate these landmarks.  If restoration continues to go well on this new plot, our total restored prairie will have been tripled!

We continue to raise funds and apply for grants to cover the costs of managing weeds on this new prairie plot and then planting native flowers next year.  If enough funds come in, the colors that will emerge in 2015 will be incredible!

If you are near Northwest Washington, consider joining us in May for our Prairie Open House to get a first-hand look at all the progress being made.   

Sep 9, 2013

2 years to go for Golden paintbrush recovery

Golden paintbrush starting to bloom
Golden paintbrush starting to bloom

Hello Everyone,

I have some great news to share regarding our Golden paintbrush recovery (a vital piece to our overall prairie restoration).  After this past summer's successful count of flowering plants, we only have 2 more years to go till our population is considered fully recovered.  Not only that, but our population is currently the largest recovery population in Washington!

We have just recently been awarded an additional year of funding from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to continue to improve and increase our population, as well as several populations around the Puget Sound.  We are grateful that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife trusts us with government funds, and we hope you will continue to trust us with your support as well.  There is still much to be done!

Warm Regards,

Holly

p.s. If you live in Western Washington, we are holding our 4th Annual Whidbey Raptor Day event.  September 21, from 1pm - 3pm.  Get up close an personal with these beautiful hunters of the air.  There are many, many other wonderful events happening on Whidbey Island that same weekend, so a trip over would be well worth it! (Kit Festival, Tour de Whidbey race, Whidbey Island Farm Tour, and more).

Summer interns & staff counting Golden paintbrush
Summer interns & staff counting Golden paintbrush

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