McKenzie Park

McKenzie Park, in the heart of the Intervale, is bordered and shaped by the Winooski River. The park is home to towering floodplain forest as well as agricultural land. With help from University of Vermont professor Bill Keeton’s restoration ecology class, Burlington Parks Recreation and Waterfront is working to restore a forested buffer in parts of the park. New tree plantings were focused on the river edge to provide phosphorus reduction by stabilizing banks. Bank erosion is considered a major source of phosphorus pollution in Lake Champlain.  With plenty of wildlife around, including tree bark-eating beavers, protecting the over 300 newly planted trees was a challenge accomplished by a combination of chicken wire and and plastic tree protectors. Additionally, students and park staff collaborated on experimental ways to control Japanese knotweed in the park.  

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