ANN ARBOR – Ann Arborites love their parks and nature areas, and one way the community can help sustain them is to volunteer during the 20th Annual Garlic Mustard Weed-out Day on May 19.
It's an annual tradition by the city's Natural Area Preservation Division, in which staff and volunteers come together to hand-pull the invasive weed from nature areas.
According to NAP, "Garlic mustard is an aggressive invasive plant which can quickly crowd out native plant species and decrease natural diversity in the woods. Identifying and pulling garlic mustard is fun and easy, making this a great volunteer opportunity for families."
Teams will be pulling weeds from 9 a.m. to noon at the following parks:
- Huron Hills Golf Course woods — Meet on Hunting Valley off Provincial Drive.
- White Oak — Meet at the park entrance on White Oak Drive.
- Hannah — Meet at the west end of Bath Street, off 7th, just north of Huron.
- Black Pond Woods — Meet on Tibbits Court, off Pontiac Trail.
- Huron Parkway — Meet at the park steward's house, 3470 Woodland Road, off East Huron River Drive.
- Argo — Meet in the parking lot north of the Argo Canoe Livery, off Longshore Drive.
NAP asks that participants wear long pants and closed-toe shoes and says they must sign a release form. Minors must be accompanies by a guardian. Snacks, tools and demonstrations will be provided.
No RSVP is necessary to participate, just show up in the proper gear and get ready to flex your weed-pulling muscles!
If you have questions, or if you'd like to volunteer with a group of 10 or more people, contact NAP at 734.794.6627 or NAP@a2gov.org.
More about garlic mustard
"Garlic mustard was introduced from Europe in the mid-1800s for food and medicinal purposes. Garlic mustard has no natural predators or diseases in its non-native environment, is very adept at seed dispersal, and has a longer growing season than our natives.
These characteristics contribute to garlic mustard's rapid spread at the expense of native biodiversity. Over time, its continued presence can result in a total loss of native ground cover in large areas, and a decrease in overall species diversity. With the help of volunteers, NAP is able to continue the fight against this herbaceous invasive plant." - NAP
NAP works to protect and restore Ann Arbor's natural areas and to foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. This involves conducting plant and animal inventories, ecological monitoring and stewardship projects in Ann Arbor parks. Both staff and volunteers perform these tasks. For more information about NAP, visit www.a2gov.org/NAP.