News Flash Home
The original item was published from 10/19/2020 3:50:00 PM to 10/16/2021 12:00:04 AM.

News Flash

Parks and Rec News

Posted on: October 15, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Native Plants Coming to Franklin Street Meadow

unnamed (6)

Remember that football-field-sized black tarp covering a field in the center of Franklin Street, between Congress and Cumberland? It was unveiled today and the City’s horticulture staff will begin a transformation from lawn to urban meadow that Portlanders can watch grow literally from the ground up. 

Portland Parks and Recreation and Maine Audubon, with support from Portland Pollinators, are partnering to create a meadow full of native plants that will benefit birds, butterflies, and other wildlife. The plan is to lay out 300 plants, grown from seed or collected by Maine Audubon over the last two years specifically for this project. After these plants are in place, the area will also be supplemented with seed later in the fall. The established plants will ensure there will be some degree of color next year, since wildflower seed establishment usually takes a few years with only small blooms in the first year. 

Maine Audubon has selected and grown roughly 15 species of native wildflowers, grasses, and groundcovers including milkweeds, Black-eyed Susan, Beebalms, Mountain Mint, Little Bluestem, and Groundsel.  Each plant is a naturally-propagated New England native with specific benefits for wildlife, yet also well-suited for the growing conditions and aesthetic preferences of such a public planting. 

Here is a list of what was planted this week at the Franklin Meadow: 🌾🌺🌸🌼🌻🌾

- Asclepias tuberosa (25)

- Asclepias incarnata (20)

- Pycnanthemum virginiana (20)

- Rudbeckia hirta (20)

- Schizachyrium scoparium (30)

- Aquilegia canadensis (10)

- Geranium maculatum (10)

- Zizia aurea (10)

- Helianthus decapetalus (10)

- Coreopsis lanceolata (20)

- Echinacea pallida (25)

- Packera aurea (20)

- Monarda fistulosa (10)

- Monarda didyma (10)

City arborist Jeff Tarling says, “After a year of waiting, we are getting ready to pull off the shade tarp and begin the transformation from lawn to urban meadow on Franklin Street.” The 300' x 50' meadow is located between Congress Street and Cumberland Avenue between the divided roadway. Tarling says, “The shade tarps were placed last fall as a method to reduce the existing grass and weed growth without using herbicides. No question it has been a challenge to maintain the shade tarp in place during those heavy wind storms, but the tarp has worked well to 'cook' the existing lawn.”  

Why native plants? “By growing more native plants in our gardens, yards, and neighborhoods, we can restore the ecology and other values that make Maine landscapes so special for birds and other wildlife,” says Maine Audubon’s Director of Education, Eric Topper. “We are thrilled to work with Portland across the city to restore habitat, beautify landscapes, and demonstrate our shared values in prominent locations for residents and visitors.” Topper leads Maine Audubon’s “Bringing Nature Home” project, an initiative inspired by and named after the bestselling book of that title by Doug Tallamy, whose  aim is to engage communities in restoring native plants. The project is made possible by the generous support of Jim & Ann Hancock

Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in Parks and Rec News


Winter Is Back!

Posted on: December 21, 2021

Snow Plowing Season!

Posted on: December 1, 2021

New Project Underway in Deering Oaks!

Posted on: December 1, 2021

Troubh Ice Arena Updates!

Posted on: December 1, 2021

Fall Horticulture Update

Posted on: December 1, 2021

Our 62+ Program is Back!!

Posted on: November 3, 2021

Congratulations, Clare!!

Posted on: November 3, 2021

Tree Canopy Update

Posted on: October 29, 2021

Playground Renovation Updates

Posted on: October 29, 2021

We are hiring Event Staff!

Posted on: October 14, 2021
Basketball AD Inside Cover small

Youth Basketball, come join the fun!

Posted on: October 14, 2021
PHC Phase I Mtg 2.pptx (1)

Portland Harbor Common

Posted on: September 29, 2021

Skatepark Expansion Project Update

Posted on: May 26, 2021
Friday news round up twitter

Friday News Round Up for September 17, 2021

Posted on: September 17, 2021
Friday news round up twitter

Friday News Round Up for September 24, 2021

Posted on: September 24, 2021