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Crown Hill Neighbors

 
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       | Home | Natural Significance | Tree Inventory I Plant Inventory | Biologists | Aerial Photo
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NATURAL SIGNIFICANCE

If you drive along Michigan Road or 42nd Street, the trees you see are primarily second-growth trees in the range of 50 to 70 years old. However, you see only the edge of the woods. These trees Dutchman's Breeches.surround and buffer the central portion of the site where you'll discover an even older forest. It is a magnificent stand of woods (see aerial photo). Among the 2,700 large trees on this parcel of land, 380 are more than 125 years old, and some are more than 200 years old. The woodland floor is carpeted with at least 29 species of wildflowers native to Marion County. The property has yet to be systematically surveyed for wildlife, so the animal diversity remains unknown. In short, this woodland remnant contains natural wetland and plant communities consistent with pre-European settlement conditions in Central Indiana. It is in a very real sense a "living museum" that links us to our cultural heritage, to a time when such forests sustained early pioneers.

Forest remnants of this type are rare in Marion County. State and city foresters believe that the forest type we see on these acres once comprised more than 95 percent of Marion County. Now less than one percent of such high-quality forest remains in the county. Marion County lost an average of 40 acres of natural woodlands per year between 1999 and 2005, losing 70 acres of older growth woodlands between 2004 and 2005 alone.

This rare parcel of woods is certainly one of the largest of its type remaining in Marion County and the largest woodland closest to the heart of downtown. If this property were to be  compromised by commercial development, the city would lose a morsel of Indiana’s natural history that can NEVER be replaced.

See also:

Plant Inventory

Tree Inventory 

 

 

Alliance of Crown Hill Neighbors; P. O. Box 88770; Indianapolis, Ind. 46208 crownhillneighbors@hotmail.com