Wildsight Golden Community Invasive Plant Program 2020

(Photo by Tesia Hackett)

On Tuesday, May 19th the Community Invasive Plant Program (CIPP) started up for the 2020 summer season.  This program was originally initiated by Wildsight Golden in our community in 2010 and is currently operated in a partnership with the Town of Golden and the Columbia-Shuswap Invasive Species Society (CSISS).  

Each year, the CIPP program coordinator works to mechanically remove invasive plants found within the Town of Golden. Invasive plants are those that have been introduced into a non-native environment. Once established, invasive plants are often able to grow and reproduce at rapid speeds, out-competing native plants and vegetation for nutrients and light with little to no natural predators. This allows invasive plant species to take over and destroy local ecosystems. Second only to habitat loss, invasive species are the leading cause of biodiversity loss in the world!

Some invasive plants spread close to home. Dandelion, burdock, oxeye daisy and other invasive plant species can be found in backyards and alleyways in Golden.  Residents of Golden can send photos of invasive plants growing on their property  to the CIPP program coordinator, Tesia Hackett.  Tesia will help you identify the plant and provide resources and information on how to manage any invasive plants you may have on your property.  The program also offers free visits to your property to help identify any invasive plants and go over safe, non-toxic ways to manage them.  Did you know that since April 1, 2011 the use of chemical insecticides, fungicides and herbicides for cosmetic purposes is prohibited in the Town of Golden?  Non-toxic removal of invasive plants is strongly encouraged. 

In addition to offering residential invasive plant identification opportunities, keep your eyes out for the Weedy Wednesday Recipes and Invasive Species Saturdays online outreach posts that will be available throughout the summer. Tesia will be providing weekly recipes on how to prepare edible weeds commonly found in Golden, as well as informative videos on invasive plants prevalent in Golden and how to identify and manage them.  

Are you interested in learning about some of Golden’s most prolific invasive plants and want to help protect biodiversity in our community?   If so, follow up through social media and the Wildsight Golden website.  Additionally, Golden’s Annual Community Weed Pull will be conducted this year on Saturday June 27th at 9 am until noon, and will follow all Covid-19 guidelines set out by the province of BC,  We will be removing invasive plants found along the Kicking Horse River for this family friendly event. We are working out the details on how to most safely provide a free lunch to all volunteers! Please contact Tesia at wildsightweedprogam@gmail.com if you are interested in attending the 2020 Community Weed Pull.