Glenn W. Daniel
King Estate Open Space

Meadow Restoration

In 2014, the City of Oakland leased a portion of the King Estate Open Space to East Bay Municipal Utility District for use as a corporation yard during a utility upgrade in the adjoining neighborhoods.  The lease was for the storage of equipment.  Unfortunately EBMUD decided to use the site to stage drain rock, base, and sand; as well as rubbled concrete and asphalt.
OKNIA was finally provided a copy of the lease agreement after making a formal document request through the city attorney's office.  However, the damage had been done. The meadow adjacent to the 82nd Avenue park entrance had been thoroughly contaminated with non-native materials. Not only did the city fail to enforce the activities specified by the lease, the lease failed to provide any conditions for restoration.  In late 2014, the OKNIA Park Committee entered negotiations with EBMUD through the city administrator's office to establish a restoration plan.  It was agreed that EBMUD would remove all non-native materials, harrow the site, and seed it with a native grass mix.  OKNIA, with extensive input from native grass consultants, provided a seeding schedule.
In early 2015, EBMUD was released from its lease agreement obligations by the city's Public Works Agency without fulfilling its agreement to restore the site.  

The Restoration Begins
Before the goats arrived in late May 2015, volunteers harvested native needlegrass seed from the KEOS hillsides. In October, the seeds were planted in deep-cell plug trays donated to OKNIA by the New Roots/IRC Program.

Photo: Allmon Matarrese
Photo: Philip Dow

In January 2016, volunteers began preparing a 500-square-foot planting site at the 82nd Avenue meadow.

Photo: Philip Dow
Photo: Philip Dow

Rubble left by EBMUD and weeds were removed.  Some rubble was too large and will be planted around.
Photo: Philip Dow
Photo: Philip Dow

Planting began in February 2016.  A dibble stick was used to create holes, and volunteers filled them with grass plugs.
Photo: Philip Dow
Photo: Tamara Thompson

600 needlegrass plugs wait for rain.
Photo: Tamara Thompson

This meadow restoration will be a five-year project.  The OKNIA Park Committee also conducts invasive species eradication and trail  maintenance.  If you would lilke to help, you can reach us through the contact link below.

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Glenn W. Daniel
King Estate Open Space Park

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