Talking Water Gardens

Talking Water Gardens is free and is open sunrise to sunset

Talking Water Gardens is an innovative public/private partnership for engineered wetland science. Partners include the cities of Albany and Millersburg, as well as specialty metals producer ATI Wah Chang.

We love seeing dogs enjoy the trails at Talking Water Gardens! Finding their waste left on the trail really… well, stinks! Help us keep the trails dog and people friendly by picking up after your pooch. Forgot your bags? There are 3 mutt-mitt stations located around the facility!

Good morning!

Photo credit: Kim Plummer

outsideonline.com

Put Your Dog on a Leash

We're really proactive about asking people to keep dogs on leash, but we need YOUR help. Be direct, but be respectful. We're all lucky to have a place like TWG to enjoy.

"Letting your pooch race up and down and across shared trails, unfettered and unpredictable, isn’t just rude, it’s dangerous. Dog owners: please cut this out. Everyone else: the next time you’re in such a situation, I encourage you to speak up. But what do you say? And just as important, how do you say it?"

https://www.outsideonline.com/2346221/put-dog-on-leash?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=facebookpost&fbclid=IwAR0KOzeiyl9u7NC-kUG76v2lNrc-PTq2nSePZCbw-1IhrU2ZGrK7oBrYywM

outsideonline.com When a trail says "Dogs on Leash," it's time we respect that—and speak up to people who don't

What's that bright green stuff on the water? Many people mistake it for algae, but it's really a floating water plant commonly known as "duckweed." The ducks love it (not surprisingly 😄) and it's a sign of a healthy wetland. Wow, the color is so brilliant right now! 🦆+🌱= duckweed!

What's that bright green stuff on the water? Many people mistake it for algae, but it's really a floating water plant commonly known as "duckweed." The ducks love it (not surprisingly 😄) and it's a sign of a healthy wetland. Wow, the color is so brilliant right now! 🦆+🌱= duckweed!

We've returned flow to Talking Water Gardens. Thanks for your patience as we waited for our cattails and bulrush to get nice and tall!

The rumors are true! We've got brand new bike racks at TWG. Local fabrication done by Magnum Metal Works & Laser Engraving. Who's going to start biking out here now that we've got the racks??

cityofalbany.net

Eagle Scout project helps western pond turtles catch rays at First Lake

Some more local Western Pond Turtle efforts:

https://www.cityofalbany.net/departments/city-managers-office/news/1584-turtles-scout-project?utm_source=City+Bridges&utm_campaign=23edcd44fc-201804_City_Bridges_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_f4b455a78a-23edcd44fc-282320657

cityofalbany.net The official local government site of the City of Albany, Oregon

Happy Earth Day from the Talking Water Gardens!

Here's are a few photos from one of our wetland reference sites along Oak Creek in Albany. This plant is our native Yellow Pond Lily (Nuphar polysepala).

Calapooia Watershed Council

City Government of Albany, Oregon is partnering with the Calapooia Watershed Council in their fifth annual Urban Ecology field trips for Albany area schools! We need enthusiastic volunteers who can help host the learning stations during the month of May. Subjects include Water Quality, Soil Science, Wetland Ecology (Talking Water Gardens) and Invasive Species. Training will be provided--no science background necessary!

Find out more information here: http://www.calapooia.org/about/volunteer-opportunities/

Sign up for volunteer training here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090945aaa82ca4fa7-urban5

Our Urban Ecology Field Trip program is seeking volunteers! In partnership with the City of Albany Public Works and Parks & Rec, this is a very fun opportunity to deliver outdoor education to area elementary students. No experience necessary! Learn more http://ow.ly/gLMs30oiEIx

[04/15/19]   Flood waters have receded. TWG and Simpson Park have been reopened.

City Government of Albany, Oregon

Simpson Park and Talking Water Gardens will remain closed this weekend. Floodwater has gone down some but water is still over some paths. Thanks for respecting this temporary change.

We're getting ready for another great year partnering with ODFW Conservation to improve nesting, basking, and hibernating habitat for Western Pond Turtles at TWG!

In the summer, Western pond turtle females lay their eggs in nests they dig on land. Eggs typically hatch in the fall, about 90 days after being laid, but incubation time varies with temperature. Most hatchlings in Oregon spend the winter in the nest, surviving on the yolk sac which they absorb as they grow, and emerge in the spring like these little ones. Hatchlings must then crawl from the nest to aquatic habitat - quite the feat for quarter-sized reptiles!

Nest predation is known to be high, but less is known about the survival of hatchlings due to their small size and secretive behavior. Biologists sometimes use exclosures to protect the nests from predators which is how the hatchlings in these photos were discovered. If they make it through these precarious early stages, Western pond turtles can live more than 50 years in the wild.

#TurtleTuesday

[04/10/19]   Simpson Park and Talking Water Gardens are temporarily closed due to high water. Please avoid the area until further notice.

Calapooia Watershed Council

City Government of Albany, Oregon is partnering with the Calapooia Watershed Council in their fifth annual Urban Ecology field trips for Albany area schools! We need enthusiastic volunteers who can help host the learning stations during the month of May. Subjects include Water Quality, Soil Science, Wetland Ecology (Talking Water Gardens) and Invasive Species. Training will be provided--no science background necessary!

Find out more information here: http://www.calapooia.org/about/volunteer-opportunities/?platform=hootsuite

Sign up for volunteer training here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090945aaa82ca4fa7-urban5

Our Urban Ecology Field Trip program is seeking volunteers! In partnership with the City of Albany Public Works and Parks & Rec, this is a very fun opportunity to deliver outdoor education to area elementary students. No experience necessary! Learn more http://ow.ly/gLMs30oiEIx

It feels like it's been a long winter, but this tiny TWG cattail sprout is here to usher you into a sunny Spring weekend!

expo.oregonlive.com

Take a walk through Oregon’s wastewater wetland, at Talking Water Gardens in Albany. Seriously

Check us out in The Oregonian!

https://expo.oregonlive.com/life-and-culture/g66l-2019/03/b5689ad4918618/take-a-walk-through-oregons-wastewater-wetland-at-talking-water-gardens-in-albany-seriously-.html

expo.oregonlive.com

[03/18/19]   Contractors will be on site today through Wednesday (3/18-3/20) regraveling and restoring the TWG parking lot and a few of our muddier walking trails.

Some sections of trail will be closed off for safety, but we will remain open. Thank you for you patience!

City Government of Albany, Oregon

We're kicking off the 2019 Oregon World Water Day campaign this week with @oeconline! Share what clean water means to you - #MyWaterWhy - throughout March and help us build a collective voice for Oregon’s water resources. What's your water why?

This Red Tailed Hawk (or RTH for the bird nerds out there) sends his gratitude to West Albany High School Environmental Club for planting native shrubs and trees in the TWG Oak Woodlands!

Thank you to Calapooia Watershed Council for partnering with us on this event, and thank you to ODFW Conservation for administering the Western Pond Turtle Grant that funds our efforts!

On February 28th, we will suspend flows to the Talking Water Gardens and lower the water level in the ponds. This is an annual maintenance activity that facilitates native plant regrowth. The cattails, bulrush, and wapato in the wetlands provide shade and transpiration which are the technology that cool our treated wastewater before it returns to the Willamette River.

Flow is scheduled to return in April. Thanks, and please continue to enjoy the wetlands as they temporarily transition to mudflats. Hint: This is a great time to see native waterfowl!

(Virginia Rail photo taken by Matt Lee 2013)

HUGE thank you to our volunteers as well as Oak Creek Youth Correctional Facility for helping us install 600 native plants yesterday! Keep your eyes peeled for more exciting volunteer opportunities at TWG in the future!

[02/23/19]   This Sunday is the big day! We will meet in the Simpson Park picnic area at 9AM for snacks and a quick overview of the project then head on out to plant some turtle shrubs! The forecast calls for 60% chance of rain, so be sure to bring warm dry clothes and a reusable water bottle for refilling. See you there!

Oak Woodlands 'Before'

We're getting excited for Oak Woodland planting this weekend! Here's a 'before' shot of the currently shrubless remnant oak stand at TWG.

https://www.signupgenius.com/go/4090945aaa82ca4fa7-shrub

Second Chances

Our Friends The Nature Conservancy in Oregon working towards major native turtle habitat restoration near Eugene Oregon.

A haven for wildlife is taking shape near Eugene, Oregon.

[02/07/19]   Anybody capture a good photo of our Wetland Winter Wonderland this week?

Happy World Wetlands Day from the Talking Water Gardens!

Thanks to our friends Willamette Restoration Volunteers who conducted invasive tree and trash removal at Bowman Park this weekend!

Another weekend, another truckload of invasive trees (and some interesting trash). Also, our first invasive species completely eradicated from Bowman Park - English laurel!

On two rainy afternoons in November, Oregon Master Gardener Nancy Hammond, Calapooia Watershed Council’s Kristen Daly, and Talking Water Gardens manager Joe Deardorff worked alongside West Albany High School Environmental Club to install 400 native milkweed rhizomes to create monarch butterfly habitat at the Gardens. Monarch butterflies are considered a “species of greatest conservation need” by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, which recommends planting milkweed and flowering plants to conserve the species.
Read the full article here - https://us9.campaign-archive.com/…

On two rainy afternoons in November, Oregon Master Gardener Nancy Hammond, Calapooia Watershed Council’s Kristen Daly, and Talking Water Gardens manager Joe Deardorff worked alongside West Albany High School Environmental Club to install 400 native milkweed rhizomes to create monarch butterfly habitat at the Gardens. Monarch butterflies are considered a “species of greatest conservation need” by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, which recommends planting milkweed and flowering plants to conserve the species.
Read the full article here - https://us9.campaign-archive.com/?u=a4a552edd91e098c98f77b3c2&id=9106c7f21f&fbclid=IwAR10j8Hud8pM1Qx7lXTCwWSfzdaBn1UwAbHBiwszgLvZusH9P6mAv7bW7jQ#mctoc8

Last month we said a fond farewell to Kim Plummer, our dedicated Wetlands Intern of four years. Kim has a passion for herptiles (especially turtles) and played a critical role in tying Talking Water Gardens in with ODFW's western pond turtle restoration efforts. Kim’s journey will likely take her to the other side of the country, where aquatic reptiles can be seen all seasons of the year. We wish her all the best in her pursuits!

Left Photo: Kim ‘notching’ a turtle's shell in order to track their population size at TWG

Right Photo: Kim constructing turtle survey traps

goodnewsnetwork.org

One Cat’s Obsession With Hunting Birds Leads to Invention That Has Saved Hundreds of Thousands

For those of you who are bird-loving, outdoor cat owners!
🐦🐈🐦

goodnewsnetwork.org One woman love of both cats and birds led to a “highly-effective” solution for household felines hunting down backyard birds.

audubon.org

Everything You Need to Know to Do a Free (and Fun) Christmas Bird Count

Anyone out there planning to do a Christmas Bird Count at TWG this year?

audubon.org You don’t need experience or even binoculars to be part of this age-old holiday tradition.

City of Salem, Oregon Public Works Water

Some cool restored/engineered wetlands efforts from our neighbors to the north!

Read about the wonders and benefits of wetlands, the new approach to managing Fairview Wetlands, and how the changes are bringing back animals, such as salamanders and frogs in this article in Salem Weekly: https://salemweeklynews.com/working-with-nature-not-against-it-citys-successful-endeavor-to-restore-wetlands/.

We've got a booth!

Come learn about TWG and get a sticker or the ever popular magic color-changing pencil at the Millersburg Celebration!

[09/11/18]   In addition to gravel trail reconstruction this week (9/11-9/12), inspection and cleaning is scheduled for the underground pipes to the Willamette River (where the water goes after TWG). In order to accomplish this, the wetlands will be drained down from September 11, 2018 until sometime near the end of the month. Updates will be posted here and on Facebook as they develop. We appreciate your patience during these critical maintenance/inspection activities

-Talking Water Gardens Staff

Contractors will conduct maintenance on gravel trails at TWG today and tomorrow (9/11-9/12). Closed trails are indicated by barricades. The Central and Northern sections of the facility will remain open (see map)

Enjoy!

[08/30/18]   Talking Water Gardens has re-opened after a fire Tuesday on a nearby property. No damages occurred at the gardens. Thanks for staying away and staying safe during the temporary closure. Come out for a walk!

City Government of Albany, Oregon

Talking Water Gardens remains closed today following a brush fire north of the gardens on Tuesday. The gardens were not damaged but fire crews are still on scene. Thank you for your patience.

City Government of Albany, Oregon

The fire near Talking Water Gardens has been contained; mop up will take awhile. No public access allowed until further notice. Thank you for your cooperation.

Fire near Talking Water Gardens has been contained; mop up will take awhile. No public access allowed until further notice. Thank you for your cooperation.

Work scheduled at Talking Water Gardens the week of June 25th:

City of Albany staff and consultants will be performing maintenance work at the Albany-Millersburg Talking Water Gardens treatment wetland, 577 Waverly Drive NE, the week of Monday, June 25, 2018.

A red tracer dye will be applied to allow study of water movement through the wetland. The tracer dye (rhodamine WT) is not harmful to wetland fish or wildlife. Vehicles and other equipment will be on site, staff will be performing survey work and taking measurements, and some pathways may be temporarily closed during the week.

Talking Water Gardens is expected to remain open to the public throughout the study. Signs will be placed at the entrance with daily information. Updates on any closures will be provided here at www.facebook.com/talkingwatergardens.

Here's one of the photos from our 2014 dye test. Note: Tracer dye contrasted next to the bright green duckweed.

ODFW Conservation

It's World Turtle Day, a great day to get to know our local, native Oregon turtles.

Oregon has Western Pond Turtles and Western Painted Turtles

Western pond turtles prefer marshes, streams, rivers, ponds and lakes. They need sparse vegetation nearby for digging nests and like to bask on logs.

Population declines are due to habitat loss, degradation of nesting areas by invasive plants, competition from non-native turtles and disease. Predators include raccoons and invasive bullfrogs and fish.

Western pond turtles are Oregon Conservation Strategy Species in the Coast Range, East and West Cascades, Klamath Mountains and Willamette Valley ecoregions.

Western painted turtles need marshy ponds, small lakes, slow-moving streams and quiet, off-channel portions of rivers. They prefer waters with muddy bottoms with aquatic vegetation. Open ground for nesting and logs for basking help keep this species healthy.

These painted turtles occur in the Blue Mountains and Willamette Valley ecoregions. In the Columbia Plateau, East Cascades and West Cascades ecoregions, they live only along the Columbia River.

Western painted turtles are an Oregon Conservation Strategy Species in these: Blue Mountains, Coast Range, Columbia Plateau, East Cascades, West Cascades, Willamette Valley.

[04/20/18]   It's that time of year again, folks! We will be lowering pond levels and reducing/suspending flows to TWG. Spring time is when our cattails and bulrush are just emerging from the ground and they want as much sunlight as possible! We count on these plant species to provide habitat for critters and of course to help cool the water before reintroduction to the Willamette.

As water levels come down, the mudflats can also be a good place to see some unique native bird species! Happy viewing!

Come learn about Talking Water Gardens at our booth at the Procession of the Species this Saturday!

Procession of the Species Is Coming Soon!

Are you looking for something to do on Saturday, April 21 that is outside, fun, and in celebration of Earth Day? We have just the thing!

Join us for the 11th Annual Procession of the Species starting at 9 a.m., visit the many Earth Day booths at the Farmers Market too! There will be educational booths and hands on activities for everyone. Come dressed as your favorite plant, animal, creature, or create your own species. No costume? no worries! We’ll have supplies on hand to make your own creature headbands. The parade begins at 10 a.m. and will meander through the streets of downtown Albany, passing by the Carousel. For more information check out our website cityofalbany.net/albanyspeciesparade or call 541-917-7755.

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Videos (show all)

Oak Woodlands 'Before'
Talking Waters Have Returned

Location

Telephone

Address


577 Waverly Dr NE
Albany, OR
97321

Opening Hours

Monday 06:00 - 21:00
Tuesday 06:00 - 21:00
Wednesday 06:00 - 21:00
Thursday 06:00 - 21:00
Friday 06:00 - 21:00
Saturday 06:00 - 21:00
Sunday 06:00 - 21:00
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