Ross Lake Park Garden Journal

Please join us as we keep you up to date on what’s growing in our native shrub and pollinator garden. It’s a great place in Long Branch for finding solitude as you gaze over the lake to the Ross Island Stone Hut


              The Effects of Stormwater on Ross Island

The intense rain storms of the past few years have begun to damage our lovely Ross Island.  As you can see from the pictures above,  there is a new island of leaf litter and silt being formed on the west side of the original island.  This causes the fast moving waters to rush around the new island and undercut the old island.  In the next picture, you can see a thin line of the ground and then the tree roots exposed underneath.  

Also, a large limb from a tree that we didn’t know was in bad shape fell off and is laying in the lake.

We want to save this treasure.  We must  work together with the rest of the towns on the watershed to try and slow down the water flow and siltation.  If all the neighbors on the Whale Pond Brook would work together we could make a difference.

Any volunteers to help stop flooding would be appreciated. We’re working with Rutgers Water Resources Green Infrastructure Champions across New Jersey.


Introduction to Green Infrastructure Champions

Green Infrastructure Champions are key players in implementing green infrastructure as an approach to stormwater management in their own municipality. Green Infrastructure Champions will be able to:

Enhance their knowledge through green infrastructure workshops, seminars, and personal research
Engage community leaders to adopt green infrastructure as a stormwater management solution by updating ordinances and municipal master plans
Encourage local non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and schools to incorporate green infrastructure in their existing landscaping
Secure funding for green infrastructure
Publicize implementation of green infrastructure through social media channels
Here is what we can offer:

Training on green infrastructure planning and implementation
Technical support to develop a design for a green infrastructure demonstration project
Networking opportunities with other Green Infrastructure Champions for mutual support
Assistance with grant writing
**A minimum of five (5) classes is required for certification.**

March 26, 2020

The garden in late March shows the stems and seed pods of last summer’s perennials. Dried leaves helped to protect plant roots during winter, returned nutrients to the soil and provided a home for moths and insects.

Last summer, we planted grasses on the opposite bank of the lake, seen in the distance.  These prevent erosion and are the are the beginnings of another garden requested by the neighbors.

After surveying the garden,  we decided it was time to prune summersweet clethra now, before new growth appears. These plants bloom only on new shoots. Pruning stimulates new growth.

Spent hydrangea blooms need to be removed. Cut back to the first new bud on the stem.

March is the time to prune shrubby dogwoods such as blood twig and red-osier. Remove some or all of the brown stems.  Young stems are bright red.

As we leave, we need to think about saving the brush removed from the butterfly garden, since  butterflies lay their eggs on and inside the hollow stems. Caterpillars will emerge if we pile the brush together in a separate part of the garden.


Neighbors working together to restore our watershed.