Troop 56 Pitches In

10 Nov

Update: We’ve added more invasive removal events! We’re so close. We need to finish the job. Please join us. We think we can do it in 3 events, but we’ve organized more, just in case: Saturday, Nov. 18 (8:30-noon), Sunday, Nov. 19, 8:30am-4pm, Sunday Nov. 26, 1-4pm, Saturday, Dec. 2, 9am-4pm, and Sunday, Dec. 3, 1-4pm. Click here to register: [This Sunday’s morning event will be added to Eventbrite later today and this weekend’s events will be changed to a 8:30am start time.] If you decide to join in at the last moment, be sure to bring a shovel, water, work boots and dress in layers of clothing. See you at the park and thanks!


Many thanks to the 40 or so who came out on our first cold windy day to lop off the heads and dig up the rhizomes of the persistent phragmites. They are beautiful, but they take over. In 2019 a seed mix of 20 wildflowers was planted in the two swales (stormwater filtration basins) at Magazine Beach. Today the eastern swale is mostly phragmites–which came on their own.

Troop 56’s Gwei Strong-Allen did a fabulous job leading her Venture Scout Project. This is a culminating conservation project, similar to an Eagle Scout Project. She recruited most of the volunteers, oriented them, borrowed tools and applied for permits.

If you’d like to contribute to this battle–man vs. phragmites–you still can. Tomorrow, Saturday, Nov. 11, from 9am-12noon, the Charles River Conservancy will hold another invasive removal event and plant bulbs, too.

If you haven’t registered, please bring a shovel, wear boots, and dress in layers. We’ll have everything else you need. It will be cold, but you’re tough and I’m bringing hot brownies…

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11/11/17 Update: On Friday we broke through the “Northwest Passage” of phragmites, opening up the North and South sections of the swale. Today, with the help of 50 MORE FABULOUS volunteers we cleared an even broader area. Students from MIT, BU, Northeastern, CRLS and volunteers from the New England Aquarium, all helped out. See our progress below.


The swales as they look now after the attention of 90 volunteers these last two days. Welcome wildflowers!






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