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New Adopt-A-Meadow Program Underway

By on January 16, 2012 in News

Girls playing at the Ojai Meadows Preserve
Girls playing at the Ojai Meadows Preserve

Adopt-A-Meadow Program: At The Ojai Meadows Preserve

Have you ever wondered what it would feel like to be personally responsible for creating a wildflower meadow? I would tell you how great it feels, but it wouldn’t be the same as feeling it yourself. For those that would like to find out first hand, the OVLC is offering a chance to do just that through our new Adopt-A-Meadow project at the Ojai Meadows Preserve.

Here’s the plan. We are dividing up a section of the Ojai Meadows Preserve into small plots, about the size of a bedroom, and asking volunteers to adopt one as a personal, family, or group project. These plots are currently covered with weeds, but with a consistent effort over a year, can be made into a native grassland / wildflower field. Over the course of a few months or a year, we can achieve something that would take nature years to do…or something that nature simply can’t do alone.

The activity starts by clearing the areas down to the soil, so the soil is exposed to the sun. Then we wait for rain, or irrigate. Once wet, the seeds of the weeds will start to grow. While they are still very small, we scrape them away and allow another generation of seeds to sprout. Then we scrape those. When we do this several times, we will have reduced the number of weed seeds in the soil. This is a critical first step. After that (early spring or next fall), we plant small plugs of native grasses and toss out some native grass and wildflower seeds. The key to success is consistency, because as the weeds grow, they are harder to remove. If they are regularly removed, the work is very easy and fast. In ½ hour each week or every other week, we can make big changes.

This worked well for us last season on a plot adopted by a Girl Scout troop, and we are asking for individuals, organizations, groups of friends, etc. to sign up and adopt a meadow. We at the OVLC will track the success of these plots and award prizes for several categories of great stewardship practices, such as “most weed free”, “best native grass establishment”, “most colorful (at the end)” and such. This is a fun opportunity to change the world and have a little friendly competition at the same time. I can say from experience that concentrated, high quality work is the best way to get results.

If you would like to adopt a plot for yourself, your family, your company, or your group of friends, please contact Brian Stark at

Some plots have been adopted and are in transition.  Check them out on the Ojai Meadows Preserve today.

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There Are 2 Brilliant Comments

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  1. Hi Brian

    We would be very interested in becoming a steward of an adopted meadow. We have a very diverse office profile of landscape architects and biologists with a special liking to help preserve our local environment.

    Please give me a call to discuss an adoption or how we may be able to help in any other way.

    Marty Armstrong
    805.794.5525-c 805.654.0486-o

  2. darcy says:

    Hi Marty,

    Brian will be in contact with you shortly. Thank you for your message.