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Students dig in to help the Quil
MARYSVILLE Strawberry Fields forever, at least if Charlee Pilon can help.
The Quil Ceda Elementary School fifth-grader was one of more than 50 students who planted 600 trees at Marysvilles newest athletic park during June 13 activities sponsored by SeaWolf Coastal Protection, an environmental protection group led by Michael Kundu, a Marysville resident and school board president.
Pilon is part of the coop program at Quil Ceda Elementary, and she was planting trees on the flats near the Upper Quilceda Creek next to the soccer fields to the north of town on 152nd Street NE.
Strawberry Fields has three soccer fields and many acres of trails and grasslands on the banks of the creek. Her classmates were planting softwood trees that absorb lots of carbon dioxide that will reduce global warming. The trees will also help reduce harmful run-off that endangers the Chinook, chum and coho salmon and sea-going trout that inhabit the creek. Meanwhile students in teachers Hank Palmer and Jerri Novys classes learned about greenhouses gasses and what people can do to reduce them.
The whole point is that there is too much carbon and trees suck up a lot of carbon, so were helping the earth from global warming, Pilon explained as she turned the sod over a newly planted cutting. Thats important because her school is near the mouth of the Quil Ceda Creek and if the ocean levels keep rising then our school will be under water, Pilon complained.
Palmer said his students studied the carbon cycle and learned that Americans produce 7,000 tons of carbon per year, and a single tree can remove 730 tons of carbon during its lifetime. If everybody planted 10 trees per year, it would help even thing out, he said.
Student Nate White said he felt pretty good by that measure, since he planted more than 40 trees during the June 13 event.
Megan Thompson wasnt so sure. She watched as Palmer put too much weight on a handle, snapping it.
Now its a hand shovel, she quipped.
The Marysville Parks and Recreation Department selected the site and cleared the grass field before hand. The kids are helping because normally two or three different forests grow and die before a permanent canopy is created by hardy softwoods, and now with about three years of maintenance the plantings should take root.
Weve eliminated a couple stages and gone right to the conifers, said maintenance manager Mike Robinson. This is kind of a neat little project. Weve wanted to do this for a long time.
Members of the Everett Explosion basketball team were helping out, as mascot Nitro mugged for the cameras with shooting guard Chris Weakley and the kids.
Students from Allen Creek Elementary School completed a similar project to the south of town on the banks of Jones Creek, and Kundu pointed out how both kids and fish benefit from programs.