Print Page

BLM California News.bytes 
News.bytes Extra, issue 514

Eagle Scout Project takes hold of the Dos Palmas Preserve

The Dos Palmas Preserve is a 14,000-acre Area of Critical Environmental Concern managed by the BLM's Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office. This area protects many important biological resources, including several listed species. 

Palm Trees in a desert canyon.

The BLM is working with several agencies to complete restoration projects for the area and encourages the public to get involved with the project by hosting volunteer events. 

On Saturday, January 7, Devin Hampton hosted his Eagle Scout Project at the Dos Palmas Preserve. He convinced local nurseries to donate 105 plants to the project: 10 honey mesquites, 40 palo verdes, and 55 desert fan palms.

Plants in pots waiting to be put in the ground.

Re-establishing these plant species to the area rehabilitates wildlife habitat for several endangered species -- such as desert tortoise, Yuma clapper rail, California black rail, desert pupfish and the flat-tailed horned lizard --- and restores vegetation displaced by the invasive plant species salt cedar (Tamarix ramosissima).

Two young men working together to plant plants.

A group of adults and children dig holes to plant plants.

Hampton recruited 30 volunteers for the event and divided the volunteers into two groups. The first group focused on planting the donated trees near the San Andreas Oasis, and the second group focused on pulling an invasive plant species, Sahara mustard, from along the border of the Preserve. 

Sahara mustard is a fast-growing weed that consumes ground cover, out-competing soil moisture and light against the native annuals. It is also a vector for fires and can devastate an area with fire during the hot summers. The BLM monitors populations of this invasive plant to prevent it from spreading into the preserve.

A group of young people weeding and area in the desert.

With volunteers planting and pulling weeds for five hours, the project was a huge success. The volunteers planted 105 trees, rehabilitating about 20 acres of the Preserve. The volunteers also collected twelve 40-gallon trash bags worth of Sahara mustard, clearing about 80,000 square feet of the border of the Preserve. A total of 150 volunteers hours were completed.

A group of volunteers who worked at the Dos Palmas Preserve.

A huge thank you goes out to Devin Hampton, Boy Scout Troop 105, and members of Hampton's church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 


- Jennifer Taylor, wilderness/volunteer coordinator, BLM Palm Springs-South Coast Field Office(Jan. 6, 2012)

BLM-California News.bytes, issue 514 -- To subscribe to News.bytes, send an e-mail to: mailto:Join-Newsbytes@List.ca.blm.gov OR visit our News.bytes subscription page .

Last updated: 05-22-2012