Sunday, October 19, 2014

The 2015 Cohort is Nuttier Than You’d Think!

The 2015 Cohort is thinking a lot of nutty thoughts!  We have been learning about nuts, identifying nuts, collecting nuts, figuring out what nuts are the good nuts, and sorting nuts alongside our friends at Adventure Central.  Why? Well, it is not just because we are all nuts!  For our cohort project we are working with Adventure Central to help address an important issue, and that is improving tree canopy.  So, let’s delve into the what, why, and how.

What have we been up to?
Earlier this semester the 2015 cohort began working with the “Purple Group” at Adventure Central.  After a group of our cohort learned alongside the Purple Group about different native nuts and seeds of Ohio we went on a field trip with Adventure Central to help Five Rivers MetroPark collect nuts to help with their goal of improving tree canopy.

Field Trip with Adventure Central

Look at All Those Nuts!

Now, about 2 to 3 times a week a group of our cohort works alongside the students at Adventure Central.  We did a nut collection of our own at Woodlands Cemetery.  Then, we float tested the acorns we collected to see what nuts were good and what nuts were bad (the good nuts sink while the bad nuts float).  Eventually, these nuts will be planted and grown in the basement of Adventure Central so that they can eventually be planted at Wesleyan MetroPark where Adventure Central is located.

Float Test at Adventure Central - Finding the Good Nuts and the Bad Nuts

Why are we doing this?
I promise we aren't just doing this because we are all nuts!  Not only are we forming a deeper relationship with Adventure Central, who is a great community partner, we are also learning about the ‘why’.  Improving tree canopy is so important for a community because trees provide so many benefits (like helping to prevent water pollution), and with tree issues like the ash borer it is important to tackle the issue of improving tree canopy head on.    

How are we going to finish this project?
We haven’t quite gotten to the point where we can finish the answer to this question, but we are on our way!  This Saturday (October 25th) we are gathering several stewards to participate in “Make a Difference Day” at Adventure Central where we will help with seed collection and maintenance. This semester we are also planning on giving the Purple Group at Adventure Central a tour of UD’s campus and next semester we will lead a tour of Dayton by utilizing the Fitz Center Bus.  In the spring we will also be taking the Purple Group on two river paddles.  If we did not sound busy enough we have even more ideas in the works, and this is all on top of the nutty work we have already been working on!    

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