You may not be aware, but there is a quiet invasion going on out there! Now we’re not talking about invaders from space. More like Black Henbane, Giant Hogweed and Scotch Broom, but these invaders are spreading fast, and they’re doing their best to take over our roadsides.
That’s why this year the ministry included invasive plant management in to our Adopt a Highway program. The introduction of invasive plant management puts B.C. ahead of the curve in invasive plant management, when compared to similar programs in other areas, including Ontario, New Brunswick, Washington and New Zealand.
Adopt a Highway is a volunteer-based roadside maintenance and enhancement program that is open to both non-profit and for-profit organizations. It’s a way for concerned citizens to give a hand in keeping up the appearance, and now environmental improvements, of the medians, boulevards, interchanges and roadsides in their communities. This is the first year in Adopt a Highway’s eight year history that spotting and reporting invasive plants has been part of the program.
Controlling these invasive plants is important, because they can spread rapidly and make it harder for native species to grow. A lot of these invaders were introduced to B.C. from other parts of the world and have no natural predators to stop them from spreading.
The Adopt a Highway program is proud to have hundreds of volunteers from all over the province. The ministry is working with the Invasive Plant Council of BC and Regional Weed Committees to deliver invasive plant recognition training to Adopt a Highway groups. After all, you have to know your enemy!
Are you interested in volunteering to stop the invasion?
If so, you can find out more about the Adopt a Highway and Invasive Plant Programs at the following websites: