The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve actively promotes installation of conservation and restoration projects. As part of an educational outreach effort, 12 acres of poorly-drained farmland located within the St. Jones Reserve were converted in 2003 to demonstration plots to highlight wetland and grass conservation options.
The goal of the project is to provide a living exhibit where interested stakeholders can visit and see a large variety of conservation practices installed.
The site contains five warm and cool season grass plots which contain Creeping Red Fescue, Side Oats Grama, Niagara Big Bluestem, Camper Little Bluestem, Virginia Wild Rye, Blackwell Switch Grass, Atlantic Coastal Panic Grass and Rumsey Indian Grass.
In addition, three types of wetland restoration ponds were installed. Pond one has 40-50 percent open water and numerous hummock areas, with an irregular shoreline, dead trees, and stumps. Pond two is 50-70 percent open water with a sparse amount of trees and a few randomly dispersed hummocks. Finally, pond three includes more than 70 percent open water and only one or two hummocks.
If you would like to schedule a tour or learn more, please contact Wes Conley, Conservationist, at (302) 739-3436, ext. 18.