Go Wild with Natives

Go Wild with Natives

Come to our meeting at the Stone House on April 9, 6:30 – 8:00 to learn why native plants are the answer!

Admission is free, but space is limited

To sign up to attend this presentation, please click on the following link:

How is your watershed vision?

 Is it murkey and muddy like Reedy Creek after a rain?

 Do you know why it looks that way?

Attend our workshop and we can clear that up for you!

See the details on our flyer below.

The registration “fee” is either $20 or 20 volunteer hours.

CLICK HERE to register

And please see our previous post for volunteer opportunities.

This event is limited to 40 participants. 

20 20 poster

Become a member of the Reedy Creek Coalition by volunteering with us.  There are many ways you can do this.  Here are some examples.

  • Become trained as an auditor for stormwater management on private and / or commercial properties.  An audit is actually a fun and challenging combination of detective work and problem solving.  Learn about various Best Management Practices such as those illustrated below.

Learn how to tell if a gutter downspout is “connected” (discharge reaches the street and hence the creek or river) or “disconnected” (discharge soaks into the ground).  If a downspout is connected, you may be able to re-direct the outflow so that it soaks into the ground rather than reaching the street.

If a downspout is connected, you may be able to re-direct the outflow so that it soaks into the ground rather than reaching the street.

Learn about rain barrels and how to store rain water for later use or re-direct a gutter discharge to an area you would like to be moist.  The overflow from this rain barrel is being re-directed to water some spice bushes which require moist conditions.

The discharge from this rain barrel is being re-directed to water some spice bushes which require moist conditions.

Learn about permeable pavers. (See http://www.estormwater.com/preserving-past.  As stated in this article, this layout at the VA Capitol grounds was designed to direct storm water into the ground, instead of allowing it to flow to the James River.)  Permeable pavers can be installed anywhere but are especially useful for commercial areas. Photo used by permission from Ted Corvey

These permeable pavers were installed at the VA Capitol grounds.

Learn about rain gardens.  These areas are constructed to be  low-lying and trap water with plants that can handle wet or dry conditions.  Like permeable pavers, they can be installed anywhere but are especially useful for commercial areas.


  • Participate in stormwater management audits of private and / or commercial properties.  A report is written for every property audited.  We’ve improved the auditing process so that by the time the audit is completed, the report that must be sent to each “auditee” is virtually written.  You’ll be working on a team to help with making BMP suggestions.
  • Become trained in stream monitoring.  We do this monthly at assigned sites in the creek, as part of a team.  The results are compiled and used to track the progress or decline of  Reedy Creek. 
  • Are you a writer?  Write articles — general or specific articles — to educate the community about our mission, how to prevent stormwater runoff and other topics such as description of native plants or habitats. We can publish these on our website.
  • Encourage and coordinate volunteers by keeping  track of volunteer hours and advertising the need for volunteers for RCC projects.
  • Participate in workday projects.  Throughout the year we conduct work projects, doing such things as storm-sewer stenciling, tree-planting, and invasive plant (e.g. as English Ivy and Japanese Stilt Grass) removal.
  • Learn about BayScaping and about how landscaping with native plants can, in itself, decrease stormwater runoff.  This knowledge will be important when you do stormwater audits.

garden July 2013_sm_2A native plant garden is beautiful.

  • Are you a gardener?  Help us grow native plants that act as host plants and nectar  plants to native pollinators and help with runoff control. We will offer these plants to the public.  Plants we need include milkweed, monarda, boneset, joe pye weed, goldenrod, spice bush and many others.  We dream of having our own native plants nursery.  For now, we must rely on individuals to grow plants in their own yards.  Could you help with this?

Ready for Milkweed Seeds, etc.

peat pots_sm

Please do consider joining us.  We usually meet the 2nd Wednesday of every month at the Stone House in Forest Hill Park, but check our calendar on the website to confirm meeting dates and times.   With help from the community we can make a difference in the health of Reedy Creek and have fun doing it.  Feel free to contact us at reedycreekcoalition@gmail.com for any questions you have concerning meetings or joining  us on any of our activities.

Why would Reedy Creek Coalition encourage you to become a tree steward?

Simple:  Trees protect water quality and, generally speaking, the more trees in the watershed, the cleaner the water will be.

If you are interested in learning to plant, prune & care for trees and in helping create a future with cleaner water, cleaner air and healthier, more beautiful neighborhoods, consider Richmond Tree Stewards.

Applications are now being accepted for the 2014 classes.

Please apply before November 22.


Tired of seeing trash littering our streams, creeks, rivers, streets, alleyways and parks?  Well, so are we!  Unfortunately, we are unable to host as many cleanups as we would like but we now have a solution!


James River Association is a great local nonprofit that has come up with a solution! Their program allows you to direct your own trash cleanup!  The Self-Directed Trash Cleanup Program allows individuals to choose the “who, where and when” and they provide you with the necessary supplies including trash grabbers, gloves, bags, first aid kits and a report sheet.  This allows you greater flexibility to hold an event when it’s convenient for you.

HOW TO GET STARTED: Go to James River Association’s website and follow their easy instructions! Be sure to let us know about cleanups in the Reedy Creek Watershed. We will be happy to post your cleanup on our website & our Facebook page.


If you need additional help please contact Amber Ellis at volunteer@jrava.org or call 804-788-8811 ext 205.

Many thanks to those who attended the WATERSHED EVENT.

Please stay tuned for more events and projects.


Join us on Saturday September 21, 2013 for 


A walking tour of rain gardens and bayscaping installations

at Westover Baptist Church and nearby homes.

Registration is required. The limit is 30 participants.


rain garden is a planted depression that allows runoff from impervious surfaces (roofs, driveways, walkways, parking lots,and compacted lawn areas) the opportunity to be absorbed into the ground.

This reduces runoff since water soaks into the ground rather than flowing into storm drains and surface waters degrading water quality and habitat.

 The purpose of a rain garden is to improve water quality in nearby bodies of water by reducing pollution & sediment that enters our streams.

Aster vimineus “Small White Aster”


Small White Aster Blooming in the Fall

This photo is courtesy of Greg Stack, University of Illinois Extension

Have you seen a plant growing in your yard that’s been green all summer and looks like this:

small aster before flowering_sm

For better identification look for small leaves at base of large leaves:

small leaves at base of large

Perhaps, because it’s been green all summer, you’ve thought of pulling it up or mowing it down.  DON’T DO THAT!!

Like all asters, this one blooms in the fall and then gives us one of nature’s small miracles: small white flowers everywhere!

In addition to being beautiful and free, the flowers of this plant  seem to attract a wide variety of insects, particularly in sunny areas. More common insect visitors include short-tongued bees, wasps, and flies, and less common visitors include long-tongued bees, small butterflies, skippers, beetles, and plant bugs.  Small White Aster serves as a host plant for caterpillars of Chlosyne nycteis (Silvery Checkerspot) and Phyciodes tharos (Pearl Crescent) , as well as the caterpillars of many kinds of moths (http://www.inaturalist.org/taxa/146700-Aster-vimineus).

So by all means, if you’re lucky enough to have some of this plant in your yard, let it thrive!


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