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Milwaukee Urban Ecology Blog

Written by Ken Leinbach
Wednesday, 19 June 2013
With a power outage, a computer server reboot headache, and rain threatening our 6th Annual Summer Solstice Soirée I had my doubts about the night, but WOW! What a magical night it was! Who knew that after six years this event keeps getting better and better, and the outpouring of support continues to amaze me! I'm almost at a loss for words, so I'll let the pictures do the talking. See for yourself what a great night we had and consider joining us again next year!
Written by Mike Ziegler
Tuesday, 18 June 2013
Along the East Side of Milwaukee’s Oak Leaf Trail, some 40 feet in the air, stories are being made. Stories of fear overcome, of goals achieved, and of limitations shattered. I’m not talking about some sort of theater of the birds; the protagonists of these stories are the victorious rock climbers on the Urban Ecology Center’s very own rock climbing wall! And now you can add your own story to the rock wall’s vaunted history for a greatly discounted rate. The Urban Ecology Center is now selling rock climbing passes that essentially allow you 5 climbs for the price of 4! The details of the climbing pass are below, but first a word about our wall.
Written by Dan Graves
Wednesday, 12 June 2013
I love late May and June. So much. The garden is begging to be planted and late May is typically when you are able to harvest your first salad/veggies from the garden. There is something so satisfying about being able to harvest and wash veggies that have been grown in your gardening space. Oddly, I have always found it kind of bittersweet too. Sowing, watering and weeding your plants as they grow connects you to them and that piece of land. When I harvest that plant, I am grateful but I also left wanting more...that is why succession planting is so fantastic!
Written by Jeff Veglahn
Tuesday, 11 June 2013
In this native plant highlight, we are going to look at the carrion-flower (Smilax herbacea), a member of the Smilacaceae family. Plants in this family are shrubs, herbs, or vines and usually perennial. The Smilacaceae family is found in tropical to sub-tropical environments, so you can think of the Carrion-flower as a piece of paradise in Southeast Wisconsin!
Written by Glenna Holstein
Tuesday, 11 June 2013
I want to tell you about one of the most incredible sights and sounds I have ever experienced. But before I can even begin to describe it to you, I need you to listen to something. So, close your eyes, imagine yourself under a big broad New Mexico sky. Now, click the play button below.
Written by Aaron Zeleske
Monday, 10 June 2013
As the weather cleared in the past several weeks, work on the Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum resumed in full swing. The contractor has just about finished grading the site and covering it with rich topsoil—soon to be followed by seeding with a mix of native plants and the installation of erosion control mats made of coconut fibers.
Written by Cassie Mordini
Tuesday, 04 June 2013
So, how does one woman raise a family, turn a business into one of Wisconsin’s largest woman-owned enterprises, form a community organization dedicated to her passion, and collaborate with local leaders and dignitaries to create one of Milwaukee’s great attractions all in the same lifetime? This same woman, now settled into retirement, is still going strong and impacting our community in positive ways. I was eager to know how she does it.
Written by Ken Leinbach
Thursday, 30 May 2013
"Who would have thought just a decade ago, when we were still in our double-wide trailer, that our "Milwaukee Idea" of solving a social problem in a park with kids' education and the magical connection to nature would have the kind of national impact we are experiencing today? I certainly never did, but I am humbled and proud to represent Milwaukee and our simple yet profound idea. And isn't it cool that this idea evolved here in a Midwest industrial town? This is not Portland, Oregon, Boulder, Colorado, San Francisco, Boston or New York. Somehow this adds credibility to our story."
Written by Aaron Zeleske
Wednesday, 29 May 2013
One vital component of the Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum is the development of trails that are sustainable and universally accessible. This past summer, Milwaukee County repaved some of the historic trails in Riverside Park originally designed by Frederick Law Olmsted in 1893. When the Arboretum is complete there will be a network of universally accessible trails near the Urban Ecology Center that will, for the first time, allow those in a wheelchair to independently navigate the park and even the river bank! Emanating from these paved paths in either direction are gravel paths that an ambitious wheelchair user can explore.
Written by Aaron Zeleske
Wednesday, 29 May 2013
In May 2012, the Milwaukee Rotary Centennial Arboretum project applied for a grant of $1.2 million from the Wisconsin Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Program.  Administered by the Department of Natural Resources, the Knowles-Nelson program makes funding available for conservation of wildlife habitat and access to outdoor recreation opportunities.

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