Storm damaged tree

Ice Storm Assessment

The park’s tree collection suffered some significant damage from the ice storm of February 13. While City staff focused on making the upper and lower oak groves safe and accessible, a team from MSPC surveyed the damage to historical flowering tree collection in the Orchard. We identified 25 trees that had suffered some sort of…

Tarter Rose Collection brick focal point with sun dial

Tarter Rose Focal Point to be Restored

The focal point of the Tarter Old Rose Collection is a mortared brick circle with roses planted around a sundial pad in the center.  Over the years, the brickwork has deteriorated and needs to be restored and stabilized so that it will last. MSPC, working in concert with the City of Salem, has found a…

Group of smiling people holding scissors cut ribbon at the Ravine public opening

Ravine Public Opening

We celebrated the Ravine public opening today when MSPC volunteers, members, and guests gathered to cut the ribbon and take down the orange fencing that surrounded the project. MSPC’s events committee provided cake and lemonade to participants and passers-by under a canopy strategically placed across from the children’s playground. The Ravine public opening marks the…

Brian Smith separates the leaves of a deciduous azalea to show the small green larvae of an aaa;ea sawfly

Azalea Sawfly Makes Its Appearance

There are a lot of tasks that go into managing a public gardening, including monitoring for pests. Here, City Horticulturist Brian Smith finds azalea sawfly larvae on one of the park’s Exbury deciduous azaleas. These hungry critters have defoliated entire groups of deciduous azaleas in past years. Here’s what OSU says about the critter: “It…

Camas in bloom at Bush's Pasture Park

Camas in Bloom

The camas fields at Bush’s Pasture Park are now in bloom in the lower oak grove. These fields were managed before 1850 by the Kalapuya people who harvested the bulbs. The Camas have remerged after the park changed its maintenance procedures. You can learn more about the park’s camas and wildflowers here. Come and enjoy…

Camellia japonica in bloom at Bush's Pasture Park

Camellia Japonica in Bloom

The park’s extensive collection of Camellia japonica cultivars are in full bloom. These shrubs were likely planted by the landscape architect team of Elizabeth Lord and Edith Schryver. Edith was quite fond of camellias while Elizabeth had a love of lilacs. The park’s camellia japonicas were likely planted in the 1950’s and 1960’s. You can…

Tom Beatty smiles in front of his cake at his retirement party

Tom Beatty Retires as City Horticulturist

Tom Beatty retired as the City’s horticulturist on February 28th.  His departure closes an 18-year tenure during which, among other duties, he served as the head gardener of Bush’s Pasture Park. While Tom had a desk at the park’s historic “root house,” he was more often out in the park supervising ground crews, planting spring bulbs…