Project Update and Work Day Plans from Jason Hallacher on August 31, 2015:
The gardens are looking amazing at the lake so far. The Black-eyed Susan’s are blooming and numerous pollinator species have already been spotted. We have a few unwanted species popping up that need to be removed (the neighboring landowners are not fond of the velvet leaf and poke weed). In attempt to make everyone happy I have formed the Lake Shenandoah Pollinator Garden Partnership so the adjacent landowners have an outlet to voice any concerns. I have planned a work day to kick off this partnership and hope that you can join us on September 12th. We will be meeting in the lake’s parking lot at 8AM. I will bring a trailer to dispose of all the unwanted vegetation. Let me know if you can make it. Thanks!
Assistant Fisheries Biologist
Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries
517 Lee Highway Verona, VA 24482
540-248-9385 – Office
Jason Hallacher is a fisheries biologist with the VA Department of Game and Inland Fisheries and married to HMN Courtney Hallacher. He is making time among his fish-related duties to take on a pollinator supporting project at Lake Shenandoah.
Aligning closely with many of the goals of the HMN Monarchs and More! 2014/2015 Focus Project, creating a signed pollinator trail along sections of the current trail around Lake Shenandoah has the potential of turning mowed grass into diverse wildlife habitat that additionally could improve the water quality of runoff from these areas. Providing educational and research opportunities and a chance for HMNs to work with one of our sponsoring agencies are more perks of the project.
Although financing and implementation skills will likely all be available within the department, Jason reached out to our chapter at our January 15, 2015, board meeting so we could be aware of the project and help out where we have interest and expertise.
Our project Committee Chair Sandy Greene is turning any HMN work on this into an approved volunteer project. Foreseeable needs include regularly scheduled workdays to remove non-native woody invasives like autumn olive, assistance with trail maintenance and input into sign designs.
Several hundred people a day may visit Lake Shenandoah to fish or recreate. … Lake Shenandoah is well-fertilized, in the middle of several groomed neighborhoods, and a native habitat would be a great thing to interpret and model for their lawn maintenance. – HMN Project Committee Chair Sandy Greene
Lake Shenandoah and the perimeter trail are owned and maintained by VDGIF and therefore require access permits or a “valid Virginia hunting, freshwater fishing, or trapping license, or a current Virginia boat registration” to use. Purchasing an annual hunting/fishing license costs the same as an annual pass at $23 but offers some matching federal funds to the department.
… the total garden area equals 0.75 acres. … we are planning on using 3-4 interpretive signs. They will be focused on Pollinators / Wildflowers, Riparian Buffers, Terrestrial Animals, and possibly Urban Gardens. … We plan to get started this spring. – Project Coordinator Jason Hallacher
Check out the persuasive Power Point presentation Jason shared with the HMN board in January: click on the first image to launch it: