Controlled burns performed throughout the the Towar Gardens

Controlled burns performed throughout the the Towar Gardens

MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP - Each Spring areas of old dead thatch are restored throughout Meridian Township in a very interesting way- with fire.

"The purpose of the burns is to use fire to stimulate the native plants that are there, the native prairie plants that are well adapted to fire and to set back and discourage the exotic plants that don't belong here," David Borneman, Owner of Restoring Nature with Fire said.

Perhaps what is most interesting about the native plants that are burned is that underneath the ground in which they grow, are drainage pipes.

The Ingham County Drain Commissioner constructed the drain system very strategically.

"We put the gardens on top of it because they're native plants and they filter the water," Carla Clos, Deputy Drain Commissioner said adding, "[Rainwater] filters down through the dirt and the plants and then it goes into pipes underneath the ground and out of the neighborhood."

The burns were performed on 12 different sites throughout the Towar Gardens and conditions had to be just right before the crew could come out.

"We need dry days, nice clear skies, not too windy, but not too calm either- a nice consistent breeze is what we're looking for," Borneman.

Borneman said it's important to not only burn the plans that need to be burned, but also to protect trees, buildings, fences, and other manmade structures in the process.

"These are very safe- done by professionals, but fire is always a dangerous thing so people should be careful if doing this on your own," Borneman said.

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