After the 2017 Tubbs Fire and 2019 Kincade Fire, we leveraged support from Sonoma Clean Power and the Office of Recovery and Resiliency to create our Healthy Habitats program, which engages community stewards to restore native habitats and protect public health throughout Sonoma County by improving soil and water quality.
With volunteer and professional crews, we work on fire-affected properties to prevent toxic material and sediment from polluting creeks and streams in the Russian River watershed. We leveraged our watershed protection efforts by joining Sonoma Ecology Center, Sonoma County Conservation Action, and Russian Riverkeeper. As a collaborative, we provide free waste containment and erosion control resources to fire-affected landowners, and assist with the revegetation and restoration of riparian and oak woodland habitats.
We also provide science education and citizen conservation through classroom lessons and meaningful stewardship actions. Around our hub at the Larkfield Community Garden & Learning Center, we’re engaging residents in the process restoring oak woodland areas, which provide valuable wild, open space and ecological benefits. Students and volunteers participate in our Maddux Ranch Oak Woodland Restoration activities, such as monitoring, species removal and revegetation, and trail-building. In the Tending Our Oaks project, students have been growing native plants for post-fire restoration and recovery, deepening their understanding and appreciation for oak trees, and the essential role they play in the greater plant and wildlife community.