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Saturday, March 2, 2013

A photo review

So I thought in honor of Invasive Species Awareness Week, I'd post some pictures of various places and properties and discuss some management techniques that could be used to improve the habitat for each property.

So at first glance this may just look like a photo of what you are wishing will happen soon (at least where we are in SE PA).  I know we are hoping that the understory becomes green soon enough, but this is the wrong kind of green understory.  First we had talked about targeted areas that you could easily win the "battle" against invasives.  The first thing I notice is that there are a few vines growing up some of the trees.  The second thing I notice is the nice wonderful ground cover of pachysandra (NEWS FLASH: THIS IS NOT A GOOD PLANT FOR GROUND CONTROL!!) 

I would recommend controlling the Pachysandra now before our spring ephemerals start to peak out of the soil which will be happening within the next few weeks.  The most efficient way to control pachysandra is to spray it with a dilute solution of glyphosate at this time of the year.  It should control the plant without harming any of the native vegetation.  ***IT IS ALWAYS IMPORTANT TO READ AND USE ALL HERBICIDES ACCORDING TO THE LABEL.  If you are not interested in using herbicide control on your property, you can attempt to pull it, but the extensive root structure of pachysandra typically makes this task difficult and can create more soil disturbance and issues.  Repeated cutting of the pachysandra when it starts to grow seems to slowly have an effect on the plant, though it may become more vigorous before "behaving."

The next thing I would do is to cut the vines away from the trees before they become a real issue.  At least in the portion of the property that we are viewing, there are only three or four Oriental Bittersweet vines that need to be removed from the property. 

This was a fairly easy one to discuss.  More to come as the week continues.

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