Tree Planting on the Upper Patuxant Below Brighton Dam March 2013 Outing Report

We had a PPTU tree planting exercise Saturday, the 23rd, up on the Patuxent below Brighton Dam. I'd like to thank all who participated and especially the organizer of this effort, Nick Weber.

The fifteen or so of us who turned out at 9:30 found that all the trees had been planted the previous week by Owen Pochetino and his Boy Scout and track and cross-country team friends. Owen's project, as Dennis Covert noted last week, was very well executed and everyone had a great time. Yesterday, the PPTU members turned out to finish the job largely by securing the stakes and policing the area. Shortly after 11, we were ready for lunch and Carl Smolka and Dennis and a number of other people prepared Italian sausage and hot dogs for our consumption. There's just something about smoked meats in the open air.

And of course we followed the repast with several hours of fishing the Pax. Everyone I spoke to caught fish, which made the day even better. There was lots of talk about fiberglass and bamboo, but even the 21st-century anglers had fun.

I'm happy to say that we had a great turnout and hope to be able to have another exercise this summer. We need to do what we can to protect these plantings for a couple years. Most important will be keeping the multiflora rose from climbing the plantings and smothering them. We will also need to do a downstream riparian cleanup. Since much of this fishery is on private land, we have to do what we can to maintain the landowners' support for our efforts.

Stay tuned for an announcement in the next couple weeks about that activity.

Jim Keil

There is certainly a major job that we could do.....during the January flood event that sent water over Haviland Mill ROAD in many places, the tubes for the expected Boy Scout planting were largely swept downstream! MANY of those plastic tubes are now in the debris fields below the bridge and are sore sights to all the landowners. If we really wanted to make an impression on those folks, it would be to try to pick up and remove as many of those up as possible....they are not going to rot any time soon!!! I also saw a bundle of the tube stakes sitting in the debris near the mouth of the Hawlings on the Howard side of the river...with pale green tubes almost everywhere you looked. I have no idea how many tubes Nick and others were able to recover before Owen's tree planting, but am sure most of the 600 tubes are still downstream lodged in brush, trees, and debris piles. this is likely best done before the trees leaf out and green tubes become lightly more hidden from view.

I do wish to extend my thanx to Nick, Dennis and many others who whipped us all up for the Saturday outing! Well done by all!

Jay Sheppard

As an addendum to this report, Jay Sheppard, Lou Reichel, Doug Portner and his son Conner, Rodger Johnson and Patrick Smith worked around Mink Hollow and Haviland Mill roads, blazing trails and removing some of the barbed wire fencing.

Attendees that were re-staking and policing the tree planting section included Dennis and Sheila Covert, Carl Smolka, Nick Weber, Jim Robinson, Ron Brooks and his daughter Juliette, Joe and Traudl Robinson, Peter Banwell, Jeremy Landis, John Lee, Dave Simms, Jim Keil, and Ken Bowyer. Cathy Nutter, Bob Culver, and Grant Faller also joined us for part of the day's activities. I apologize if I missed anybody.

Sam Haviland joined us for lunch. He and the O'Keefe families have been very supportive of our activities. We thank them for this support and we thank the O'Keefe's for allowing us to park along the farm lane.

Ken Bowyer

Thanks to Juliette Brooks for the first six of the following photos and to Jay Sheppard for the last two.

Tube Repair

Final Adjustments

600 Trees

Start of Lunch

The Crew

Finally Fishing

Still Cold

A Beautiful Stream