2020 NPSO Annual Meeting Cancelled

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and in the best interests for the health and safety of our members, the Cheahmill Chapter has decided to cancel the Annual Meeting this year. While the number of new cases should decline over the next several weeks and months, subsequent waves of COVID-19 are likely to recur once social distancing is relaxed. We are exploring hosting the meeting next year (2021) at Spirit Mountain Lodge and offering much the same program.

If you have already sent in your registration form and payment, your checks will be shredded. Those whose checks were already deposited will receive a refund.

We look forward to seeing all of you in 2021, hopefully at Spirit Mountain. Please stay safe and healthy through this difficult time.

NPSO 2020 Annual Meeting

May 29 - 31     Spirit Mountain Lodge, Grand Ronde, Oregon

Field Trips

Saturday May 30, 2020    9 a.m. - 4 p.m.                    Field Trip # 22

Masonville and Muddy Valley Habitat Reserves

The resident elk herd makes regular appearances on the Masonville Preserve.

Difficulty:     Easy to moderate  (2- to 3-mile hikes at each site) - No established trails, uneven ground

Elevation:     400 feet elevation gain

Group Size Limit:     15

Photo: Amie Loop-Frison
A Fender's blue butterfly feeds on Kincaid's lupine, Lupinus oreganus. Healthy populations of Kincaid's lupine at the Muddy Valley site provide seeds for propagation.

Trip Description:     The morning will be spent at the 314-acre Masonville Habitat Reserve. The late Ted and Harriet Gahr, Cheahmill Chapter members, owned the property and added many native plants. The Nature Conservancy bought the property in 2010 and transferred it to Yamhill Soil and Water Conservation District in 2018. Partnerships among several agencies have enabled a transition to higher quality habitats, and the site is becoming a functional wet prairie, with riparian, marsh, and upland white oak communities.

Douglas fir were removed to release oaks, followed by seeding native grasses and forbs in the understory. The wetlands received intensive work to remove invasive species and drain tiles. Non-functioning berms were reconfigured so water could move more naturally; seeds, bulbs, and plugs were planted. Expect to see Tolmie's mariposa lily (Calochortus tolmeii), fool's onion (Triteleia hyacinthina), forked-tooth ookow (Dichelostemma congestum), California oat grass (Danthonia californica), checkermallows (Sidalcia nelsonii and S. campestris), small-flowered lotus (Lotus micranthus), barestemmed desert parsley (Lomatium nudicaule), and tarweed (Madia sp).

This tour will provide a good overview of how restoration works on a large, diverse property with resources across many agencies.

After lunch, we will visit the 540-acre Muddy Valley Habitat Reserve. It includes a hayfield/wet prairie with vernal pools, a year-round creek, upland oak woodland and savanna, and a mixed species forest. Six ponds are home to one of the largest populations of western pond turtles in the Willamette Valley.

The goal is to restore ecological function across the property while protecting existing remnant native populations. Wetland plants, such as popcorn flower (Plagiobothrys sp.), western yellow cress (Rorippa curvisiliqua), straight-beaked buttercup (Ranunculus orthorhyncus), native sedges (Carex), and grasses grow in the vernal pools. The hillsides have a natural population of Kincaid's lupine (Lupinus oreganus), along with Tolmie's cat's ear (Calochortus tolmiei), two species of Clarkia (C. amoena and C. purpurea), deltoid balsamroot (Balsamorhiza deltoidea), and narrow-leaved mule's ear (Wyethia angustifolia). Most of the prairie species native to the area can be found here.

Both sites are managed by the Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District and are not generally open to the public. Participants are encouraged to help generate plant lists for both sites.

Appropriate Clothing and Footwear:     Waterproof footwear and hiking poles recommended.

Special Considerations:     Poison oak in uplands.

Meeting Place and Time:     Trip # 22 leaves at 9 a.m. from Spirit Mountain Lodge entrance. Plan to arrive 30 minutes before departure time to meet your group and arrange carpools.

Driving Miles and Time from Spirit Mountain Lodge:     23 miles, 30 minutes on paved roads; parking on grass

Driving Directions:     Trip leaders will provide detailed driving instructions.

Leaders:       Amie Loop-Frison, Josh Togstad, Chris Seal, Thomas Hoskins, Lynda Boyer

For Masonville, Amie Loop-Frison, habitat conservationist, Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District. Chris Seal, biologist, USFWS. Thomas Hoskins, conservationist, NRCS District. Josh Togstad, riparian specialist and stewardship technician, Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District.

For Muddy Valley, Amie Loop-Frison, habitat conservationist, Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District. Lynda Boyer, restoration biologist and native plant manager, Heritage Seedlings.

Plant Lists and Other Information:     Clink on the links below for more information about this trip.

One of the meadows at Masonville Preserve includes Prunella sp.

Farewell to Spring, Clarkia amoena

Common Clarkia, (Clarkia rhomboidea)