Table 24- Baden Powell Park
Site 24 Baden Powell Park General Description
This park is a jewel among the citys parks that needs to be more broadly known due to its large size, diverse plant communities, overall excellent condition and presence of endangered species and communities. It has wonderful potential for nature enjoyment for both local citizens and tourists. It should be promoted as one of the citys natural assets. Baden Powell Park is located south of the Welland River (Chippawa Creek) and east of Montrose Road. Access to the park is from a parking area east of Montrose Rd. A car track or unimproved roadway extends under the Queen Elizabeth Way highway to provide access to the park. Barriers prevent car traffic along this roadway beyond the parking area on Montrose Rd., however some all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) have access through a gap in the barrier. There used to be a parking area to the west of the Queen Elizabeth Way but this was blocked off a number of years ago in order to minimize damage to the park caused by motorized vehicles and dumping. Due to the isolation of the park, there used to be a dumping problem, but during the latest survey this did not appear to be a problem anymore. A number of improvements have occurred to this park over the years. The boy scouts used to use this park for camping; thus the name of the park. The boy scouts, the NPCA, the Niagara Falls Nature Club, the Park in the City Committee and possibly other groups have been involved in tree planting activities in the park. Numerous studies of the vegetation in the park have been conducted over the years, and prescribed burns have been conducted to enhance the oak savannah and tall grass prairie communities. The wetlands of Grassy Brook meander through the park until they eventually flow into the Welland River. A small boardwalk provides excellent viewing of the wetland species along the creek. Two small bridges provide access across Grassy Brook to the southern portion of the park. Due to the diversity of the park, the survey was done over three days and divided the park into 11 polygons.
Polygon 1 Is the small forested area at the south end of the car track as it turns east. A trail leads south from the main cart track down to the floodplain of the creek. Polygon 1 consists of a fairly open canopy with some larger trees and a large number of shrubs.
Polygon 2 Located to the east of Polygon 1 and south of the main car track. It is separated from Polygon 1 by the trail which loops around and returns to the main car track. Polygon 2 is denser than Polygon 1 with more shrub vegetation and sparser canopy trees.
Polygon 3 Is the forested area south of Grassy Brook. Polygon 3 can be accessed by the two bridges that cross Grassy Brook at the east and west ends of the park. Small car or ATV tracks provide some access into the woods, but the thick underbrush limits access to most of the area. Most of Polygon 3 consists of a full canopy forest, but this may change because a large number of the trees are ashes and elms which are subject to disease.
Polygon 4 Polygon 4 is the floodplain of Grassy Brook consisting primarily of wetland species. The boardwalk and the section along the river have an astounding diversity of plant species including species at risk.
Polygon 5 Is the wooded area along the north edge of the park, adjacent to the Welland River. A badly rutted car track runs through this area.
Polygon 6 Is a tall prairie grass community and one of the highlights of the park. A large variety of native grasses and wildflowers are found here. A number of prescribed burns have helped to maintain this prairie community.
Polygon 7,10,11 Three tree plantations consisting primarily of white pine.
Polygon 8 Consists of an oak savannah community. This is another of the highlights of the park as a large variety of species of oak are found here. A prescribed burn was held here a number of years ago to clear out the underbrush and open up the forest. The bark of the oak trees is resistant to fire, and so the oak savannah communities can be maintained by fire. Additionally, fire encourages the germination of oak seedlings which grow better in an open forest due to their intolerance for heavy shade.
Polygon 9 Is the portion of the park west of the Queen Elizabeth Way along Montrose Rd. Although there are a number of trees here, many of them are dying elms.
Recommendations 1. Improve trails to address rutting and drainage issues. 2. Re-establish some hiking trails that have grown over. 3. All-terrain vehicle (ATV) barriers should be installed
strategically to deter this illegal activity. Careful considerations should be made to the location of the barriers to insure that ATVs arent simply moved to a different part of the woodland. Special signage should be part of these barriers that inform ATVers of the negative impact they are doing to the natural environment and the potential harm they could cause to park
users. 4. To raise awareness of the woodland features and functions,
informative signage should be put on site. The signage should be installed near a main trail or access point to the woodland.
5. Removal of invasive species should be done. Priority for removal shall be in areas where there is greater impact on the existing native vegetation. After removal of invasive species has occurred, monitoring is necessary to ensure that these plants do not re-establish themselves. The techniques used for the removals shall be tailored to the invasive species being removed and be in accordance with industry standards.
Figure 1- Rose Swamp Mallow, Credit: NF Nature Club
Figure 2 Vehicle tracks. Credit: NF Nature Club
Baden Powell Park Plant Species Inventory
Legend: Layer: 1=Canopy(>10M), 2=Sub-Canopy, 3=Understory, 4=Ground Layer
Abundance: r=Rare, o=Occasional, a=Abundant, d=Dominant
Invasive Species: ai=Aggressive Invasive Species, i=Invasive Species
Old Growth: og=Old Growth
Plantation: p=Plantation Species
Federal Status: t=Threatened, v=Vulnerable, sp=Special Concern
Provincial Status: e=Endangered, t=Threatened, v=Vulnerable
Site Name Polygon Layer Species
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Acer negundo o
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Acer negundo a
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Acer negundo r
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Acer negundo a
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Acer saccharinum r
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Acer saccharum r
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Acer saccharum r
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Carya ovata r
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Carya ovata o
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Corylus Americana r
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Crataegus crus-galli a
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Crataegus crus-galli r
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Crataegus mollis o
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Fraxinus americana r
24 Baden Powell Park 2 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica d
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica a
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica d
24 Baden Powell Park 6 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica o
24 Baden Powell Park 7 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica o
24 Baden Powell Park 9 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica d
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Fraxinus pennsylvanica a
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Juglan nigra o
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Juglan nigra a
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Juglan nigra o
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Juglan nigra o
Site Name Polygon Layer Species
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Ostrya virginiana r
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Picea sp. o
24 Baden Powell Park 11 1 Picea sp. o
24 Baden Powell Park 7 1 Pinus strobus d p
24 Baden Powell Park 10 1 Pinus strobus d
24 Baden Powell Park 11 1 Pinus strobus d p
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Pinus strobus r
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Populus deltoides o
24 Baden Powell Park 6 1 Populus deltoides o
24 Baden Powell Park 7 1 Populus deltoides r
24 Baden Powell Park 11 1 Populus deltoides o
24 Baden Powell Park 4 1 Quercus alba r
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Quercus alba o
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Quercus alba o
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Quercus bicolor o
24 Baden Powell Park 4 1 Quercus bicolor r
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Quercus bicolor o
24 Baden Powell Park 10 1 Quercus bicolor o
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Quercus macrocarpa o
24 Baden Powell Park 3 1 Quercus palustris o
24 Baden Powell Park 5 1 Quercus palustris r
24 Baden Powell Park 6 1 Quercus palustris o
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Quercus palustris o
24 Baden Powell Park 8 1 Quercus rubra a
24 Baden Powell Park 10 1 Quercus rubra r
24 Baden Powell Park 1 1 Quercus rubra r
24 Baden Powe