A Watershed Moment: What it Takes to Restore an Ecosystem

Restoration ecology removes invasive species and increases biodiversity in order to improve soil conditions and protect water resources

This week we hear from restoration ecologist and soil scientist Todd Aschenbach, a biology professor in the Natural Resource Management program at Grand Valley State University.

Restoration ecology is the process of improving degraded land by removing invasive species, improving soil conditions, and increasing biodiversity to create a stable ecosystem.

Aschenbach is personally involved in several restoration projects in Grand Rapids including the Land Conservancy of West Michigan and the Sustainable Agriculture Project at GVSU. Both projects seek to improve the ecosystem through community gardening or removing invasive species and planting diverse native plant species.

“Improving soil scapes, watersheds, open spaces, and connecting people to their community gardens is certainly productive for the Grand Rapids community,” says Aschenbach.

West Michigan gardeners are in a constant battle to annihilate invasive species like Garlic Mustard from West Michigan, and to replace invasive species with diverse native plants. Meanwhile, community gardens, such as the Barefoot Victory Garden in Eastown, are becoming popular as more people take advantage of public, neighborhood gardens.

Listen to this episode of A Watershed Moment here to learn more about restoration ecology in West Michigan.

A Watershed Moment” is a weekly radio program focused on environmental news and happenings in West Michigan, plus solutions for living a greener life.  Broadcast on WYCE-FM 88.1 on Tuesdays at 8:30am and 5:30pm, this program is produced by Grand Rapids Community Media  Center and West Michigan Environmental Action Council.

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