Channel Islands
Restoration
Mainland Projects
CIR has vast experience with invasive plant removal and revegetation projects from the
Santa Ynez Valley to the San Pedro.  We provide a partial list of our mainland projects below,
but we add new projects faster than we can add them to our web page!    



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Hammond's Meadow Preserve

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CIR is working with many project partners to restore the native coastal habitat of the Hammond's Meadow Preserve, once the locations of the Chumash village Shalawa.  Visit the Hammond's Meadow Project web page for more info.







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CIR is working under contract with the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians to eradicate multiple large stands of Arundo donax in a tributary of the Santa Ynez River.  This work is taking place on the Chumash reservation in the Santa Ynez Valley.  CIR worked closely with Chumash fire crews to cut and remove the Arundo while preserving the native flora in this sensitive and unique natural area.  Chumash and CIR environmental staff continue to monitor the Arundo eradication.


Santa Ynez River Arundo Eradication



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CIR worked in partnership with the Santa Barbara County Agricultural Commissioner's office to eradicate an infestation of punagrass (Acnatherum brachychaetum)  located on a horse ranch on Happy Canyon Road in Santa Ynez.   Puna grass is an "A" rated noxious weed and is a tough, spikey bunchgrass that interferes with harvest machinery, and horses and cattle find unpalatable.




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Starting the in the fall of 2006, Channel Islands Restoration began removing Arundo donax from Refugio Creek west of the City of Goleta in Santa Barbara County. †CIR is working on this restoration project in cooperation with The Land Trust of Santa Barbara County, the Cachuma Resource Conservation District and the Santa Barbara County Flood Control District. The project involves:
  • Removing at least 100 separate patches, on 4 acres, of Arundo donax, as well as several smaller areas of other invasive plant species detrimental to the wildlife ecology of Refugio Creek.
  • Stabilizing the creek bank on over one mile of Refugio Creek to reduce the chances of large-scale bank failure, future sediment deposition into the creek, and bank-cutting that undermines riparian vegetation and habitat values and threatens high-quality orchard land.
  • Re-establishing native riparian habitat on 17,000 square feet along the creek corridor by planting more than 3000 trees, shrubs and herbaceous annuals. These plantings stabilized the creek banks, created shade to cool and conserve water in the creek, and provide excellent habitat for a wide array of local wildlife.
  • Conducting three years of post-installation monitoring, re-treatment and replacement planting to ensure a successful outcome.
  • Demonstrating a model for collaboration among private agricultural landowners, government agencies and non-governmental organizations to address watershed enhancement on the Gaviota Coast.

Follow this link for:
Photos of the Arundo removal and replanting work,
plus more details of the Lower Refugio Creek Project




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CIR is worked with the County of Santa Barbara Agricultural Commissioner's office to eradicate artichoke thistle (Cynara cardunculus) on the Gaviota Coast. Artichoke thistle is a difficult to remove invasive weed that is very destructive to native habitat.

CIR's Artichoke thistle project on the Gaviota Coast




CIR has performed extensive invasive plant removal projects for the Land Trust of Santa Barbara County on the Arroyo Hondo Preserve on the Gaviota Coast.  Our work at the reserve takes place in close proximity to several listed/threatened/endangered species including southern steelhead trout, red-legged frogs and tidewater goby.  CIR is trusted to perform careful and professional work in highly sensitive habitats at Arroyo Hondo.  For more than 10 years CIR has worked at the reserve to removing invasive trees, periwinkle (Vinca major) and onion weed(Asphodelus fistulosus).

Arroyo Hondo



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CIR is working with the Santa Barbara Zoo and the City of Santa Barbara to restore a section of the Andree Clark Bird Refuge on zoo property.  Operating under funding from the Southern California Wetlands Recovery Project, CIR has removed over 100 invasive Myoporum trees, plus cape ivy (Delairea odorata) and many other invasive species.  We have planted several hundred native species at the restoration site with the help of over 250 volunteers!


CIR Santa Barbara Zoo Andree Clark Bird Refuge restoration project

Santa Barbara Zoo Restoration


Santa Barbara Zoo Restoration


Santa Barbara Zoo Restoration




Working under contract for the County of Santa Barbara Agricultural Commissioner's Office, CIR has treated many stands of Arundo donax in Hidden Valley Park along the Arroyo Burro Creek in Santa Barbara.





Working with the County of Santa Barbara, Channel Islands restoration supervised the removal of giant reed (Arundo donax) from a two-mile stretch of Carpinteria Creek. Since 2005, CIR removed 42 tons of Arundo from the creek.

Carpinteria Creek offers great potential for steelhead trout recovery. Unlike many other South Coast streams, its channel still runs freely under open spans (rather than through culverts). The upper reaches of the creek contain great fish habitat, and water flows year round through the urban reach of the creek. Along much of the creek, there is a tall native tree canopy that maintains the cool water that steelhead require. Because of these features, Carpinteria Creek may offer the best opportunity among all the urban streams in southern Santa Barbara County for restoring significant steelhead runs in the next few years.

The creek is under threat from non-native, invasive plants like Arundo donax.Arundo is an extremely fast-growing plant resembling bamboo. It can grow four inches a day, and up to 30 feet tall. It prefers moist conditions, and usually grows along streams and ditches. Today Arundo is aggressively invading our streams. It spreads quickly, even into thickly vegetated areas, and crowds out native plants.

Arundo affects riparian systems by growing aggressively into monocultural stands, displacing entirely the native riparian vegetation. Arundo chokes stream channels and creates debris dams that cause increased bank erosion and clogging of road culverts, impeding fish travel during storm flows. The high, straight stalks of Arundo provide little shade to the creek environment, while consuming large amounts of water compared to native plant species. Arundo has little or no value as food for local wildlife, or as nesting/roosting sites.

Carpinteria Creek Restoration (Channel Islands Restoration


Carpinteria Creek Restoration, Arundo donax removal by Channel Islands Restoration

Carpinteria Creek Restoration, Arundo donax removal by Channel Islands Restoration

Visit the Carpinteria Creek Coalition web page for more information on the creek.






Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal and Native Plant Revegetation Project

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CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR is working in partnership with South Coast Habitat Restoration, Carpinteria State Beach and the Carpinteria Creek Coalition (with funding provided by the Southern California Wetland Recovery Project) on a innovative project to remove iceplant at the foot of Carpinteria Creek at the State Beach.  CIR staff and volunteers first "solarized" the iceplant (eradicated it by placing sheets of black plastic over the iceplant thereby heating it and depriving it of light).  While leaving the dead iceplant in place, CIR staff and volunteers installed nearly 2000 native plants after the plastic was removed. 

This technique allows for the eradication of the iceplant without the use of herbicides, and leaving the dead iceplant in place prevents erosion (hand-removal of the iceplant would destabilize the soil and possiblely cause erosion).  The dead iceplent aslo acts as a mulch, helping to control weeds, while keeping soil moisture high around the installed native plants.

The sites was a bit challenging since the iceplant was growing on a steep banks, that were several hundred feet long, mostly comprising sand and rock.  Despite the challenges, all of the iceplant was eradicated and at least 90% of the installed plants survived.

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

Volunteers plant natives at Carpinteria State Beach

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project

CIR Carpinteria State Beach Iceplant Removal Project







CIR has a long association with the Coal Oil Point Reserve on the Goleta Coast. Part of the University of California Natural Reserve System, Coal Oil Point Reserve is administered by the University of California. CIR has conducted dozens of important and extensive invasive tree and shrub removal projects on the reserve over the last decade.

CIR invasive tree removal at Coal Oil Point Reserve



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CIR has treated Pampas grass in Elings Park in Santa Barbara. Much of this work has occurred in very rugged terrain, and the plants were growing directly with native coastal sage scrub plants.


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Starting in late 2009, CIR began restoring sites along Los Carneros in Goleta. Under funding from the Goleta Valley Land Trust, the project involved removal of key invasive plant species from the perimeter of the Lake followed by re-vegetation of the area with native plants. More than 350 volunteers have helped with this project so far. The project emphasizes community involvement and education, and enhances important bird habitat and directly benefits Santa Barbara honeysuckle (a species of special concern.) We are proud to be working closely with the City of Goleta on this project.

CIR restoration site at Lake Los Carneros in Goleta





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Channel Islands Restoration Lookout Park Arundo removal project

Channel Islands Restoration Lookout Park Arundo removal project

Channel Islands Restoration Lookout Park Arundo removal project
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This site is being updated. Check back in a few days for the finished version



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CIR treated Arundo donax on private property in rugged terrain in Mission Canyon near the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden.



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CIR has removed multiple large stands of Arundo donax under contract with the Montecito Fire Department at various locations along creeks in Montecito.



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CIR has worked under contract with the Santa Barbara County Agricultural Commissioner's office to eradicate Papas grass (Cortaderia selloana) and Russian knappweed (Centaurea repens) at various locations on More Mesa in Goleta.



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CIR has worked under contract with the City of Santa Barbara Parks Department to remove several invasive species in Parma Park.  Our work has involved careful invasive eradication in native plant communities.



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For at least two decades, members of the communities adjacent to the San Marcos Foothills Preserve have worked to save this important natural area from development and create a community open space and nature preserve. The San Marcos Foothills Coalition (SMFC) was formed by a group of these neighbors, and its supporters have worked passionately to save rare native bunch grass prairie, burrowing owl and grasshopper sparrow habitat from development. The 200 acre San Marcos Foothills Preserve is the result of years of struggle, hard work and finally, compromise.

The San Marcos Foothills Atascadero Creek Habitat Restoration and Community Stewardship project attempts to address several important needs related to the Preserve, its Stewardship Plan, and the neighboring communities and nearby schools.

Before and after pictures of the Atascadero site

Channel Islands Restoration San Marcos Foothills Project

channel Islands Restoration san Marcos Foothills restoration project


Channel Islands Restoration San Marcos Foothills restoration project



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For at least two decades, members of the communities adjacent to the San Marcos Foothills Preserve have worked to save this important natural area from development and create a community open space and nature preserve. The San Marcos Foothills Coalition (SMFC) was formed by a group of these neighbors, and its supporters have worked passionately to save rare native bunch grass prairie, burrowing owl and grasshopper sparrow habitat from development. The 200 acre San Marcos Foothills Preserve is the result of years of struggle, hard work and finally, compromise.

The San Marcos Foothills Cieneguitas Creek Habitat Restoration and Community Stewardship project attempts to address several important needs related to the Preserve, its Stewardship Plan, and the neighboring communities and nearby schools.

The goals of this habitat restoration project are:

  1. Increase biodiversity and function on approximately 3 acres of burned wetland and riparian habitat adjacent to Cieneguitas Creek. Long-term grazing has favored the growth of non-native and invasive plants, and the area was damaged by the Jesusita Fire in 2009. Following the fire, the site saw a marked increase in the presence of non-native invasive plants. The project has removed key invasive plant species, and we have followed up with revegetation of the area using native plants grown from locally collected seed.
  2. Re-establish and increase populations of native species in a riparian zone by establishing and maintaining a 50 foot creek buffer from top of bank,
  3. Promote community stewardship of the Preserve and environmental literacy through the recruitment and training of volunteers from local schools and neighborhoods.
So far, more than 200 volunteers have helped CIR with this important restoration project!

Befor and after picture


Volunteers plant natives at the San Marcos Foothills site






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CIR has worked under contract with the County of Santa Barbara to eradicate artichoke thistle (Cynara cardunculus) and silver nightshade (Solanum elaeagnifolium) on the San Marcos Foothills Preserve.



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CIR has treated several large stands of Arundo donax on San Roque Creek under contract with the County of Santa Barbara.



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CIR has worked under contract with the Santa Barbara Botanic Gardens.  We have treated several key invasive around sensitive native plants in the garden.



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CIR is treating invasive (including Arundo donax) at the Hendric Ranch Nature Area on the Santa Clara River. We are working in partnership with Coastal Restoration Consultants.





CIR is working with ARCADIS US to restore habitat near McGrath State Beach in Oxnard. The project includes wetland creation and dune enhancement on two parcels totaling nearly 30 acres. A major aspect of the project is protection of the Ventura marsh milk-vetch (Astragalus pycnostachyus var. lanosissimus), an endangered species that grows on the North Shore site. The milk-vetch was thought to be extinct until a small population was found growing at the North Shore site. CIR staff carefully removed invasive plants that are threatened the endangered milk-vetch.

Channel Islands Restoration Dune Restoration North Shore McGrath

The North Shore site at 5th Street and Harbor Boulevard in Oxnard"

The McGrath site at on Harbor Boulevard in Oxnard





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CIR has worked under contract with The Nature Conservancy to eradicate Myoporum trees and iceplant at Ormond Beach in Oxnard.



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CIR has partnered with Bio Resource Consultants to restore 3.25 acres of habitat, including approximately 2 acres of giant reed (Arundo donax) and 1.25 acres of disturbed southern willow scrub on the Santa Clara River near Santa Paula.  The goal of the project is to create and restore/enhance riparian habitat to increase wildlife diversity, including creation and/or enhancement of southwestern pond turtle habitat.  This project is meant to mitigate impacts of the City's new waste water treatment facility.   Work began in late spring of 2011.



CIR Arunto Removal Project Santa Clara River, City of Santa Paula



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CIR has treated giant reed (Arundo donax) at three properties on the Santa Clara River owned by the Nature Conservancy (TNC).  We continue to work on TNC property in partnership with Coastal Restoration Consultants.



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CIR is working with the Conejo Open Space Foundation to remove invasive plants in the Conejo Open Space.



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CIR is working with ARCADIS US to restore portions of the Rice Ranch area in Orcutt.



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CIR staff train volunteers in eradication techniques at Saddle Peak in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreational Area.

CIR worked in close cooperation with the Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council and the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area to eradicate Spanish broom (Spartium junceum) at Saddle Peak in the National Park.  CIR staff trained volunteers in eradication techniques and helped supervise volunteers.



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Peck Park


Peck Park

CIR is helping several agencies to remove non-native vegetation and to plant natives at Peck Park Canyon in San Pedro as part of a larger project. Peck Park Canyon is a 31 acre corridor located within Peck Park. The project includes erosion and sediment control, flood control and water quality improvements through the infiltration of storm water. CIRís work focuses on high priority locations in the canyon streambed.