Preventative creek maintenance at Claggett

A Keizer parks staff member along with two members of the Environmental and Technical Division and a single volunteer participated in a creek-side planting event at Claggett Creek Park on Nov. 9 from 1-3 p.m. 

As a part of Keizer’s stream side plant program, the participants, Austin Foster, Haley Seth, Jenny Ammon and Roy Price, all spent their afternoon in the rain planting Douglas Spirea, Western Red Cedar and Oregon White Oak down on the banks of Claggett Creek. 

They also installed several small fences around the young flora to protect them from beavers and deer. 

In addition to planting, volunteers also placed mulch around the plants to help quell some of the Reed Canarygrass, an invasive type of plant that chokes out wetland areas and erodes river banks, from regrowing. 

The removal and planting are important to maintain as this helps ensure that wildlife in the area can continue to use the park and river as a natural habitat. 

Price, a retired wildlife technician of 42 years for the Oregon Bureau of Land Management (BLM), commented on the need for events like this. 

With the invasive plant species taking over the embankment and eroding it, the water grows too hot in the summer as there is not enough shade for the fish. 

When salmon are prevented from using the creek during their spawning season creates a devastating chain, like the first falling domino in a series. 

Price spoke to how the creek was once a place for salmon to come and spawn in the summer as it is a tributary feeding into the Willamette reiterating the creek’s importance. “Eighty percent of the wildlife [here] are dependent on water areas like Claggett [creek].” 

A number of other animals like beavers, deer, birds and insects all suffer and lose a valuable resource in the creek when it is unable to be used. 

By reestablishing native plant species to the area, it helps increase and aid biodiversity in the area. 

For those seeking more information about events like these or would like to participate, you can go to, find the Environmental and technical Division’s facebook page or email Jenny at [email protected]