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Students spruce up Talbert Nature Preserve

OC Parks and Waldorf School of Orange County join forces to cultivate new grounds.

By Susan BelknappPublished: December, 2010

On Monday, Nov. 29, students of Waldorf School of Orange County, (WSOC), took a short and familiar 12–minute walk from their campus to the Talbert Nature Preserve in Costa Mesa with the objective of cultivating a new area within the preserve, which is now known as the Waldorf School of Orange County Nature Preserve.

The alliance, between OC Parks and WSOC was developed to create this long-awaited garden. WSOC is grateful for the learning opportunity, as well as for a hands-on opportunity to serve the community and there is a tremendous amount of excitement around the project.

Fifteen California Sycamore trees, one designated for each high school graduating class currently enrolled at the school (Class of 2011 to Class of 2025), will be the backdrop to a variety of 200 California native shrubs, which include mule fat, elderberry, lemonade berry, and coyote bush, to name a few. The students first planted the Sycamores, class by class, and then got to work on the shrub planting.

It was a wonderful opportunity to enrich the learning value of native plant gardening.

Sue Stoffal, OC Parks resource specialist, will impart some knowledge about the environmental impact of choosing plants that would naturally occur in an environment: draught tolerance, reduced maintenance level and their ability to attract native wildlife. Creating this type of environment goes hand-in-hand with

Although Nov. 29 marked the inaugural planting date, this project actually started last June when the eighth graders (class of 2014) cleared and prepared the ground for this project.

All they knew at the time was that something special was going to happen in the near future regularly scheduled visits to the Native Plant Garden to check on its progress and provide any necessary maintenance.

It’s been two weeks, and the excitement for a thriving preserve is palpable with the students.


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