Poe may be a second-magnitude spring and the largest in Alachua County, but over the years our water managers have not done their jobs to protect it, and it ceased flowing for the first time in recorded history in 2011. Most of our rivers and springs have declined around 28 per cent in flow due to too much ground water pumping. Due to excessive nitrates from fertilizer and septic tanks, Poe has also experienced the fate of many other Florida springs, which is “… the complete elimination of the native, higher plants typical of a healthy spring… (Bob Knight, Silenced Springs. p 73.)
So, when Poe re-opens in January, go and enjoy the spring before your Florida Department of Environmental Protection lets it be killed off completely, like Worthington Springs on the Upper Santa Fe and White Springs on the Suwannee.
If allowing our springs to dry up sounds repugnant to you, we can get a good start in push-back by shutting down the Seven Springs/Nestle pumping from Ginnie Springs.
OSFR is working hard on that, but we need help.
Read the complete article here in the Gainesville Sun.
Comments by OSFR historian Jim Tatum.
– A river is like a life: once taken,
it cannot be brought back © Jim Tatum
Poe Springs to be closed for months for improvements
An infusion of cash from the federal government and a local tax will pay for upgrades at Poe Springs Park, which will be closed from Sept. 8 through January.
The work will include widening and lengthening the boardwalk to the spring, replacing the canoe/kayak launch and replacing the restrooms, said Jason Maurer, Alachua County Parks and Open Spaces manager.
“The boardwalk has been open but it’s been in really bad shape. We were maintaining it as best we could,” Maurer said. “We want to try to get it done during the down season.”
Alachua County owns the 202-acre park on the Santa Fe River near High Springs on County Road 340. Poe Spring is rated as second-magnitude in terms of the water that flows out of it — about 45 million gallons a day. It is the largest spring in Alachua County.
The property includes a playground, volleyball courts, sports fields and nature trails.
It features access for fishing, canoe and kayaking, tubing, swimming and picnicking….