Floating Islands? Really? — 20 Comments

  1. BW, this is absolutely fascinating. Have these floating islands been used elsewhere? Apparently so, since you have the details about how the grass anchors itself into the sediment. Are there places where you can see installations that have “grounded themselves”?

    One of my first tasks is to be sure that the Galveston Bay Foundation knows about this. Surely they must. On the other hand, every time I’ve read about a volunteer day for planting grasses, it’s been a “get in the water and do it by hand” deal. There surely are areas around here that could make use of this technique.

    Wonderful post. And kudos to the company and the creative souls who designed this. When you think about it, it’s just a variation of what gardeners have been doing for decades with their little pots – starting baby plants with some help and support before they go out into the garden.

    This is exciting. 😉

    • Linda, I have gone back and included links within the story to the originator of this product “Biohaven” and to some of their photos of prior projects that are well established. You will note in some of the pics, they they are doing them differently than we did. I think they have sort of
      tweaked the process over time and have arrived at a method that works really well using volunteers “on the ground” rather than in the water. Some of my past posts about marsh grass planting involve doing exactly what you mention . . . trudging through the muck to put the plants down. This is just so much nicer and has a great success rate of the plants surviving, too. So, now you have the website to share with the powers that be over your way! Yes, it IS exciting!

  2. Thank ye for sharing this well documented story – a very “green” use o’ recycled materials and a vital restoration project. There is an article (with a couple more photos) about yer day at America’s Wetland Foundation and another longer one on Houma Today

    Similar projects have been used up near New Orleans Lower 9th Ward (Holy Cross neighborhood) in Bayou Bienvenue to repair flood damage – some a result o’ the failed MR-GO channel.

    Projects like this are so important because they are DOING something constructive – instead o’ just talking about it. A quote often attributed to Bruce Lee (but actually from famous German philosopher, Goethe) applies in this – and any similar – situation:

    “Knowing is not enough, we must apply. Willing is not enough, we must do!”

    Keep sharing…we’ll keep spreading the word – and doing whatever we can to help!

    “I am only one. But still, I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.” (Edward Everett Hale)

    “Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” (St. Francis of Assisi)

  3. One more thing…anyone who reads this – especially the part about the 25 mile distance that took an hour to drive – should look closely at a satellite view on Google Maps o’ the area. Ye’ll see that to go 25 mi. across many parts o’ South Louisiana requires going another +20mi. north and out o’ yer way!

    Look CLOSELY at the map – ye may be confused by the many “Lakes” that are in open water…that’s the epitome o’ coastal erosion; much of it created by humans tearing redundant canals into it!

  4. I was waiting for this post. I knew you’d have one after seeing a photo and reading about this in the paper last week. I don’t recall the exact location where those were placed other than it being in your area.
    Do you know if more projects are planned in different areas and how many mats will be made for each?

    • I forgot…click on the “Bayou Sauvage floating island photos” and you’ll see where you CAN “own an Island”. There are different shapes AND you can also have one custom made too.

    • The main supporters of this project were the Bayou Chapter of the CCA, the local Office of Coastal Zone Management, the America’s Wetland campaign, and on and on! I don’t know of any others on the books right now, but I have it on good authority that I will be helping to pick a spot in my area to do this next year!

      • So…How much is one of these little gems? Maybe some of your “followers” would like to make a contribution towards the purchase of one or more.

        • One thing I failed to do was ask the cost per linear foot, which is usually how shoreline protection is measured. I know they said months ago at a meeting, but I’ve forgotten. Maybe I have it in my notes, but I can find out some time today because I want to know, too.

          • I read the articles in the links you posted and it was $80 per foot in one of them. This was a very interesting piece. Someone had a great idea when they came up with these floating islands.

  5. Sweet pretty neat etc. And food pix. As I get worse and worse in the diabetic dept and the back dept that is about all I can do is look at food.
    I suppose the final life of these floaters is to become anchored somehow?

  6. Great recap! I was there Friday and saw it first hand. You explained it very well. To my understanding this project was actually created by Coastal Conservation Association volunteers from our local Bayou CCA Chapter. CCA along with the Parish and Shell have been working on this project for over 2 years. I was involved with this project from its inception. It was extremely beneficial that Americas Wetlands, Entergy, and numerous other great sponsors came on board, but that didnt happen till within the last 6 months. We are really hoping this trend catches on and it has a beneficial impact on our marsh and marine life. It will act as a habitate for marine life, along with rebuilding marsh.
    Matin Ecosystems really did a great job in coordinating this whole project. We hope to do more with them in the near future.

    • Hey Ryan, thank you for so much for correcting my error! I should have done a little more homework on who started this thing. It’s amazing how when something is successful everybody wants to take credit, isn’t it!!! I am co-founder of a grassroots clean up that we call the Trash Bash down here on Bayou Dularge, and the local CCA chapter helped out one year, headed up by Capt. Droopy. Did you take part that year? If so, we would have met then. Thanks for the taking the time to leave us a comment, and I hope you come back soon! BW

  7. That looks like a really cool project and I really like the idea of adopting an island type thing. I wish there was a way Jason could take a group of his kids out on something like that but I doubt the school would be up for a 12 hour one way field trip, lol.

    Unrelated note, I sent you a text yesterday morning, did you get it? My phone decided to jumble up my contacts so I hope it went to you.

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