Recently we exposed Sacramento City Councilmember Ray Tretheway to the Ray Tretheway Grove on the Conservancy’s Silva tract preserve. About six years ago, when Ray was on the Conservancy’s Board of Directors, he and I planted two trees on what we call the Silva dairy site. This is hard scrabble land. Soil tests showed that the soils in the area were, in part, “cementitious.” That is, cement-like. Not exactly the best for tree growing. But we were determined to get trees growing and habitat conditions on the site improved. The Sacramento Tree Foundation later planted additional native trees on the site.
In addition to trees, the Conservancy planted “purple needlegrass” (Nasella pulchra) around the grove, a native grass that is the designated state grass of California. After a struggle, the grass and the trees now look more than beautiful. The trees still have a way to go before they reach maturity and full health, but we are confident the trees will form a beautiful entrance to the Silva dairy preserve. In the adjacent photo, you can see Ray in amongst the purple needlegrass with some of the trees on the site. This is probably the finest purple needlegrass stand I’ve ever seen. And we at the Conservancy are so pleased with Ray’s hand in restoration on the property.