Friday, April 1, 2011

State-wide Invasive Plant Removal Day

Virginia's third annual state-wide invasive plant removal day! The only event of its kind in the nation!
Saturday, May 7th, 2011. Gather your friends and neighbors to create a project near you!
Invasive species are recognized nationally and locally as a costly and leading threat to healthy ecosystems. The estimated annual cost of invasive species in Virginia is $1 billion (Va Dept. of Conservation & Recreation). Non-native invasive plants, animals, and diseases occur in all of Virginia's ecosystems and negatively impact water quality, wildlife populations, and other natural resources. Virginia's citizens can improve the situation by not planting or spreading invasive plants, by removing invasives on their own properties, and by helping to remove them from parks and other public areas. Help to spread more awareness and understanding to engage Virginians in these efforts.
Invasive plants are threatening Virginia's natural areas from Norfolk to the Shenandoahs. Plant invaders alter wildlife habitats and reduce biodiversity. But volunteers like you can make a difference. In 2009, More than 400 volunteers contributed more than 1300 hours of service and removed more than 250 bags of invasive plants. In 2010, more than 300 volunteers contributed more than 750 hours of service in works sites covering more than 50 acres. Their service and additional in-kind donations are valued at more than $15,000. Virginia needs your support again in 2011. For more information and to register a project site. From a post on the Virginia Master Naturalist's website.
Kudzu overgrowing trees and other plants, photo by Robert L. Anderson, USDA Forest Service,