The Farmland Advantage (FLA) program is working hard to restore BC’s natural habit – including riparian areas. Farmland Advantage recently completed riparian restoration work on Knott Farm in Aldergrove, BC.
Knott Farm is located within the Bertrand Creek Watershed, and is owned by Nancy and Peter Knott, who have lived on the property for over 30 years. They raise horses and partially lease their pastureland to a beef producer. A creek within the Bertrand Creek Watershed runs through the property, next to the pasture fields. This creek is home to a diverse array of life including salmon & other native fish species, birds, and beavers.
In September of 2021 a Farmland Advantage Advisor visited Knott Farm. During the site visit, the FLA Advisor found the riparian area along the creek needed some attention. Trees that once lined the creek bank had died and fallen, and the bank was slumping and showing signs of erosion. On one bank very few native plant species were found; primarily grass, whose roots were not strong enough to hold the earth. The livestock that had access to the riparian area had also accelerated the rate of erosion.
“There were a couple people that approached us and asked if we’d be interested in [Farmland Advantage], and when they explained what the whole idea was about it sounded good. It made sense that they are trying to preserve the riparian area around Bertrand Creek, and we’re all for that.”
To mitigate these issues, the FLA Advisor worked with the Knott’s to form a restoration plan, which included several methods to improve the health of the riparian area:
- Stabilizing the bank with large rocks,
- Planting native species along the bank,
- Installing beaver guards around plantings,
- Installing a livestock fence to prevent horse and livestock access to the creek.
In February and March of 2022, with the financial support of the Farmland Advantage program, the planned restoration work was undertaken. The work had been delayed due to the atmospheric river event which brought strong winds and near-record amounts of rain to many areas of BC.
More About Farmland Advantage
Farmland Advantage is working with farmers across BC. In the Lower Mainland, Farmland Advantage has ongoing projects located in the Bertrand Creek Watershed and Little Campbell River. Farmland Advantage partners with landowners, municipalities, and local organizations to undertake restoration work along the creekbank and grasslands on farm sites. Through the program, we hope to restore habitats for species at risk and fish populations, improve water quality, biodiversity, and soil health.
Support for this project was provided by the Healthy Watersheds Initiative, which is delivered by The Real Estate Foundation of BC and Watersheds BC, with financial support from the Province of British Columbia.