The Roland Park Community Foundation (RPCF) and Friends of Stony Run(FSR) are working to improve the Oakdale Meadow area in Stony Run Park, implementing a key element of the 2017 Stony Run Strategic Plan.
In recent years, rainfall, groundwater and springs have created a muddy mess that has encouraged park users to circumvent the existing path and form new pathways, inadvertently trampling vegetation and compacting soil around tree roots. In early 2019, a temporary diversion of water from the swampy area of the Meadow to the Stream confirmed the potential for improved drainage. This temporary hose is still in place.
RPCF commissioned landscape architect Tom McGilloway of Mahan Rykiel Associates to propose a plan for light grading, planting and construction of a relocated pathway. With positive feedback from an October 2019 community meeting and the RPCF landscape committee, McGilloway completed this plan in early 2020. The design includes a raised pathway interspersed with low wooden bridges through wet areas. Budgeting and fundraising continue toward future project completion. In the meantime, this progress has occurred:
· Temporary fencing around the perimeter of the Meadow has kept foot traffic to a defined pathway and allowed regrowth of the Meadow.
· A short test path was installed in February 2020 to rave reviews. The path material is a stone-clay blend that has been time-tested elsewhere.
· FSR planted 3 bald cypress and a persimmon tree in the Meadow this spring as the first phase in the planting of native plants and trees that thrive in wet areas.
· Baltimore City Forestry has recently assisted in much-needed tree trimming.
The area surrounding the Beer Memorial Journal Bench is also slated for an upgrade. A stone platform for the bench will address erosion, while new plantings will improve screening and provide seasonal interest. The Nature Sacred Foundation and RPCF are funding these improvements. A Community Weeding & Planting Day will be organized in coming months.