Westerly Road Church Youth Volunteer at Mountain Lakes Preserve

On Saturday, March 24, the Westerly Road Church Youth Group volunteered their time to help with land stewardship at Mountain Lakes Preserve. Friends of Princeton Open Space Naturalist, AeLin Compton, with the help of Steve Hiltner and Andrew Thorton, led the group of volunteers in a morning of invasive plant removal.

The day began with a short talk by AeLin on the importance of preserving native plant communities and the threats posed by invasive species.  Then the group learned to identify a few plants, including native spicebush and invasive honeysuckles.   For the remainder of the morning, they worked along the entrance of the Mountain Lakes driveway, removing invasive shrubs and vines.  The energetic volunteers cleared entire patches of Oriental privet, Amur honeysuckle and multiflora rose, and rescued several large spicebush from aggressive Japanese honeysuckle vines.  Through all of their efforts, they’ve given the Preserve’s native plant communities an opportunity to grow and flourish into the growing season!

Below are a few pictures of the day’s fun!

Special thanks to Westerly Road Church Pastor of Youth, Robert Olszewski, and the wonderful group of volunteers for all of their hard work!

If you’d like to volunteer with Friends of Princeton Open Space, please contact AeLin Compton at aelincompton@fopos.org.