Green Lents

Green Lents Watershed Team

Johnson Creek Stream Clean, August 2010. SE 92nd & Flavel team
The Watershed team's goal is to enhance the Johnson Creek Watershed within and around Lents.  Johnson Creek flows through the south part of Lents and connects the neighborhood to the rest of the watershed.  From its headwaters east of Gresham, Johnson Creek flows 26 miles west to the Willamette, passing through two counties, four cities, and a variety of land uses.  The creek has been much-altered by human activities, especially by the Works Public Administration (WPA) in the 1930's.  In the name of flood control, more than 15 miles of the lower watershed was straightened and armored with basalt boulders, blocks, and concrete while any debris 'encroaching' on the creek was removed.  These measures not only failed to reduce flooding but seriously impaired habitat quality for wildlife including salmon.  Now, many organizations and individuals are working to restore the ecological functions in the watershed.  Removing invasive species, planting trees and other native flora along the riparian corridor, and reconnecting the creek to its floodplain are some of the various efforts currently being undertaken. Low-impact development and sustainable storm water management, such as rain gardens and green streets, reduce the amount of water and pollutants flowing off hard surfaces directly into the creek.  This work is especially important as the Portland Metro region continues to grow and expand throughout the watershed.

Current volunteer opportunities:

  • Invasive species removal (semi-monthly)
  • Tree and native shrub plantings (September-April/May)
  • Litter cleanup (continually in upland/riparian areas, August in the creek)
  • Green street stewardship (continually)
  • Outreach & awareness building (continually)

Some of these activities are coordinated through organizations such as the Lents Springwater Corridor Habitat Restoration Project, the Johnson Creek Watershed Council, and SOLV while others are self-directed.