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Into the Woods

By Sherri Kimmel


Ed Collier was one of the many volunteers who helped plant more than 100 trees along Crum Creek Oct. 26. Photo by Laurence Kesterson

While initiatives to preserve and restore the College’s distinctive Crum Woods are ongoing, more needs to be done, according to Jeff Jabco, who co-chairs the Crum Woods Stewardship Committee with José-Luis Machado, an associate professor of biology who conducts research with students in the woods.

“It takes a lot of money and labor to get that going,” says Jabco, director of grounds and coordinator of horticulture for the Scott Arboretum.

To help the cause, for the last four years the Delaware County Conservation District, the Chester Ridley Crum Watersheds Assoc., and Aqua water company have joined the Crum Woods Stewardship Committee in funding the planting of more than 100 trees a year along the Crum Creek. In late October, an eager crew of about 40 shovel-toting grounds and arboretum employees and community volunteers installed maple, sycamore, tulip poplar, swamp white and red oaks, birch, and other native deciduous trees.

“The goal,” says Anne Murphy, executive director of the Watersheds group, “is to plant trees that do well along streams in wet and dry conditions. We are trying to protect the Crum Creek.”

Yet another main initiative of the Crum Woods Stewardship Committee, says Jabco, has been reduction of the deer population, which damages the woods. The committee also has just completed a walking map of the woods. (Find it at

The arboretum also is assisting campus sustainability by transitioning some open areas to organic lawns. (See Page 20 for more information.) In these so-far limited grassy areas between the Mertz Residence Hall and Magill Walk, and Parrish Beach in front of Clothier and Parrish halls, only natural products are applied to the lawn. Student gardeners are often spotted tending these areas, deeply involved in this project as with all of the College’s sustainability efforts.

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