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Audubon Society, Ravine Gardens announce native plant partnership

PALATKA – The Santa Fe Audubon Society Inc. has partnered with Ravine Gardens State Park on an initiative to increase the number of native plants throughout Ravine Gardens State Park.
The Santa Fe Audubon Society has agreed to purchase $1200 worth of native plants over the course of the next several months to be planted at various places throughout the park. Many of the plants will be planted in areas where Hurricane Irma caused damage in September 2017. Plants will be planted by park staff and volunteers.
Native plants provide food and shelter for native birds and other wildlife. Laura Berkelman, a representative with the Santa Fe Audubon, explains “I am pleased that Santa Fe Audubon, Inc. has chosen to support Ravine Gardens, and that Ravine Gardens is actively working on restoration efforts with native plants.   The native plants are necessary to the ecosystem to provide food for larvae which in turn is the baby food our songbirds rely on to feed their chicks. 96% of our land birds feed their chicks caterpillars.  Ravine Gardens will recover from hurricane damage with more butterflies, more birds, beautiful native plants and beautiful birdsong, too.”
The partnership will reach beyond a single planting. The Santa Fe Audubon will help supply the park with educational materials, which will be available for visitors at the park’s civic center, along with a display detailing the project. Additionally, interpretive signs will be placed near examples of the planted natives, further highlighting the project. The hope is to educate visitors on the importance of native plants and the impact they have on the native bird populations.
Developed as a Works Progress Administration project in the 1930’s, Ravine Gardens State Park is popular for walking, hiking, bird-watching and other outdoor recreational pursuits. The park encompasses a complex steep head ravines system along with a number of areas throughout the park that are maintained as historic gardens.

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PluggedInto is an ePublication covering news, history, local events and more in the Putnam/Flagler/St. Johns tricounty area.

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