UNCW students, faculty work to restore Bluethenthal Memorial Wildflower Preserve

UNCW students, faculty work to restore Bluethenthal Memorial Wildflower Preserve

WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) - Dozens of UNCW students, faculty, and administrators spent Friday afternoon working to spruce up the the Herbert Bluethenthal Memorial Wildflower Preserve.

“We have a few groups that are going to be in charge of mulching the paths and covering up the roots. Some people are going to be removing the roots and we also have people who are going to be planting native plants like Cypress Trees and Venus Fly Traps and pitcher plants and doing trash removal as well as just walking around and making sure everything is running correctly,” said UNCW Student Government Sustainability Chair Rebekah James.

The wildflower preserve located on UNCW’s campus was dedicated nearly 45 years ago, but suffered significant damage from Hurricane Florence. Trees were cleared and many trails were washed out.

“If you go into the preserve, you’ll see there are still trees down from Florence, a lot of roots are up on the path which means it’s not super safe to walk through right now so it’s definitely been hit pretty hard. Hopefully today we’ll get it back to something where students can use and appreciate it,” James said.

The UNCW Student Government Association holds a monthly day of service, and will work on this project until its completion.

The 10-acre preserve honors the memory of Wilmington businessman Herbert Bluethenthal.

There are trails lined with cypress, pine, red maple and sweetgum trees. The natural area provides opportunities for not only scientific study but also reflection for studies in art, creative writing and the enjoyment of a quiet, natural setting for a walk.

It is also a great place to catch a glimpse of a Venus Fly Trap.

“We actually have them in like these planter boxes so if you go through the preserve they’re marked so you can actually go and see them and look at them and know where they’re located,” James said.

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