Brandon Smith (Redwoodtwig)
23.2 Guardian Pine
This guild started out as a lone pine, surrounded by grass that had been sheared short; pine needle droppings had been raked up and disposed somewhere so that it was a nice suburban type lawn. Photos from 1999 -2002 show it this way, though I only have a few of them. I started mowing around the outside of the needle fall and let things come up as they wanted underneath.
The lush green shrubs that came up when I stopped mowing under the drip line looked quite nice, certainly had a nice bloom of white flowers in the spring. I now know that these shrubs are bush honeysuckle, which explains why none of the native species that would like to live in the guild were there -- the bush honeysuckle leafs out early and creates dense shade, preventing growth of anything except a few plants that can handle really dense shade all day long.
The intervention to restore biodiversity in this guild is to get rid of the bush honeysuckles and plant some native species that get along better with each other.