Invasive Plant Species Cleanup Scheduled for February 25

Easton Utilities, Talbot Master Gardeners and Waterfowl Chesapeake Team Up to Restore Habitat and Remove Invasive Plants at Bay Street Ponds Site 

Talbot County Master Gardener plant specialist leaders will be guiding Easton Utilities and Waterfowl Chesapeake volunteers on February 25, 2020 in a restoration and clean up project that will involve removal of the invasive plants already identified at the site – which is owned by Waterfowl Chesapeake and plays a major role in the outdoor activities of the organization’s Waterfowl Festival.

Master Gardeners have identified the invasive species as English ivy, porcelain berry, amur bush honeysuckle, Japanese honeysuckle, white mulberry, privet, sweet autumn clematis, multiflora rose and Star of Bethlehem. The plants will be removed by cutting, pulling, pruning and digging and Easton Utilities equipment such as a bucket truck will be used to reach the vines high in the tree limbs. A skid steer with a brush cutting head and rake attachment will be used to remove lower invasive plants.

The site of the project is located along the north side of Bay Street in Easton, Maryland, between the 322 bypass and Washington Street,  adjacent to and west of the Bay Street ponds.

Master Gardeners will guide the volunteers to preserve any native plants, as these will serve the important foundation when ultimately replanting the site. Though the site work to be done will be closest to the road, and away from the stream, protective measures will be used where necessary to stop erosion and materials from entering the stream. Waterfowl Chesapeake will be responsible for applying herbicides by a certified herbicide specialist to the cut stumps or scraped trunks of invasive vines and trees prior to and after the clean up.

Following the initial clean up, WC and Master Gardener leaders will work with volunteers over the next several years to keep the invasive plants at bay. Invasive species will continue to come back unless they are displaced by other vegetation. It is important these invasive plants be managed over a longer period so that ultimately, native plants can be planted to thrive.  Once the area is cleared of the invasive plants, WC will replant it with native plants.  WC has applied for a Department of Natural Resources grant to assist the ultimate planting of native species on the site.

Volunteers are encouraged to come out to help! Wear old clothes and gloves. Tools and supplies will be provided. Call 410-822-4567 for more information.