Wildflower woods is an active restoration project and demonstration area that began in 2010 as a tool for teaching about healthy forests. This area of the preserve is unique because it is totally fenced off—allowing native plants to grow without being eaten by deer.
Since 2010 we have planted small trees, shrubs, ferns and wildflowers to restore the understory. Many plants that were once absent from this area such as elderberry and red trillium have also returned on their own in the absence of deer. Unfortunately, invasive plants are also incredibly common in this area so the work in Wildflower Woods is never done! Every year groups of volunteers and staff work together to remove invasive plants and replace them with natives. Some invasive seeds can remain in the soil for 15 or more years– so it’s important to keep our effort strong year after year.
We hope to someday claim Wildflower Woods as invasive free, but recognize the challenge associated with this. We also recognize that that some invasive plants in our region may be here to stay. That’s why we focus our efforts on removing plants that have the greatest potential to cause harm to our environment or focus in areas where we have high likelihood of successfully removing an unwanted species.