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What allowed these plants to grow? | by Neponset River Watershed Association
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What allowed these plants to grow?

Here is a great growth of aquatic plants in the stream flowing into Ward's Pond ("Willow Pond") on the Jamaica Plain/Brookline border, in early March (3/6/2010). Here's an interesting question: These plants have been accessing a supply of nutrients in order to grow. What is their source, that they can create such a lush green carpet at this early time of year? Are the nutrients provided by waterfowl (ducks, geese, coots, gulls, swans, cormorants) waste in Jamaica Pond, dog waste that flows off the path surrounding Jamaica Pond, or from decaying aquatic vegetation in the pond? Or, could the nutrients be from the adjacent sewer access hole (run your cursor over the picture above, to see the sewer label) (untreated human sewage), a broken pipe in the hillside just above the sewer access (not visible in the picture) (e.g., potential raw human sewage). Or, is it a completely natural phenomenon that these plants would grow so lushly, in this spot, at this time of year? Perhaps it is just a nutrient "tea" traveling down the hillside around the stream, from decaying leaves, twigs, animals, etc. // On another topic - Jamaica Plain pipes into the Neponset River some of the water that runs along its streets during rainstorms and days of snowmelt. This is called "stormwater" or "runoff", and it carries a cocktail of pollutants from daily life - oil from cars, rubber from tires, ice-melt from sidewalks and front stairwells, fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides from our yards, cigarettes, and plastic beverage containers. Learn how you can help protect the Neponset River at

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Taken on January 1, 2004