From it’s headwaters at the 10,000 year old Roxhill Bog, Longfellow Creek flows 3+ miles through the urbanized Roxhill and Delridge neighborhoods of West Seattle and drains into the Duwamish River. While salmon had been absent from the creek for 60 years, the Duwamish tribe historically fished there from time immemorial and now it is one of two Duwamish River tributaries that still supports spawning salmon.
Despite the return of salmon to the creek, Longfellow Creek still faces numerous challenges. One-third of the creek flows through underground pipes. Coho salmon experience high levels pre-spawn mortality. Stormwater carries pollutants from paved surfaces and overwhelms combined sewage overflows, discharging untreated sewage into the creek. Noxious weeds take over public and private land and outcompete more beneficial types of streamside vegetation.
In the fall of 2019, KCD assisted private landowners in the Delridge neighborhood with a Longfellow Creek buffer revegetation project. KCD, along with our sponsored Washington Conservation Corps crew, and an enthusiastic group of volunteers removed noxious weeds covering a 8,500+ square foot area. Dense patches of bamboo, thickets of blackberry, a carpet of ivy, laurel, holly, and a handful of other weeds were controlled.
Following that work, 461 native trees, shrubs, and groundcovers were planted in that area. The project is now in it’s third growing season and those plants are beginning to leap in growth!
Join KCD staff and Lisa Ciecko, a Plant Ecologist representing Green Seattle Partnership and Seattle Parks and Recreation, on Thursday, August 11 from 6-8 pm for a tour of the project and information about restoration work being done in the adjacent public green space.
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