Spring has arrived. Fluttering birds gather berries and bugs, butterflies float on the cool ocean breeze and flowers paint the hills with color. New life is emerging, and it’s an exciting time to experience nature on the preserves. Bees are not the only ones busy buzzing around the plants. Helping hands are hard at work attentively planting over 10,000 native species around the Peninsula in restoration areas. An AmeriCorps team of nine members ages 19–24 years from across the nation has worked alongside Conservancy Stewardship Technicians for nine weeks to help restore five acres in Peacock Flats in the Portuguese Bend Reserve. Local volunteers in our Adopt-a-Plot program are restoring critical streamside habitat in Lunada Canyon and rare Palos Verdes blue butterfly habitat areas at Linden H. Chandler Preserve. Hundreds of volunteers turned out on Saturday Outdoor Volunteer Days to beautify White Point Nature Preserve’s native plant demonstration garden. Native Plant Nursery volunteers help grow native plants from seedlings. When mature, these will be planted in preserve restoration areas. We encourage you to join us during one of our work days to restore the preserve’s native landscape. Even with below-average rainfall for the season to date, wildflowers are blooming after a long dormancy during the severe drought Southern California experienced over the past few years. Visitors may spot purple lupine, golden poppies and maybe even the elusive Indian paintbrush and Mariposa lily. And while native plants are growing, Conservancy crews are working hard to battle back the threat of invasive weeds in order to protect critical wildlife habitat and to encourage native wildflowers to thrive. We strive to promote the unique and captivating array of plants and animals that call the Peninsula home. You are invited to join us on a monthly nature walk, attend a Conservancy event and volunteer in one of our programs to help steward the Peninsula’s nature preserves.
A new White Point Docent program is flourishing with dedicated volunteers to show visitors around the nature center and describe our educational offerings. Since August 2014, eight docents have dedicated themselves to helping introduce visitors to all of the interactive media displays, children’s activities and exhibits both in the Center and in the demonstration garden. They also help with education programs for student field trips. For more information about becoming a docent, please visit www.pvplc.org and select ‘Volunteer.’
George F Canyon Nature Center has refined naturalist-led programs for nature lovers of all ages. First Saturday mornings feature guided family walks at 9 a.m. First Sunday mornings offer beginners’ bird walks at 8:30 a.m., with binoculars provided. But the highlight for many is the monthly full moon hike for ages 9 and up. Please call for times and to reserve your space at (310) 547-0862.