Use of the Forest

Public use of Saginaw Forest is encouraged. Rules for the public's use include (but are not limited to):

Friday, April 16, 2010

Garlic mustard: PULL THEM OUT!

Garlic mustard growing along the road-edgeThe perennial bane of Saginaw Forest -- garlic mustard --is back, along with the spring. Growing primarily in places where there re gaps in the canopy, they are especially thick along parts of the main road, as well as near the cabin. While I am trying to minimize the amount of the stuff in front of the cabin, there is already a lot of the stuff that can be found throughout the forest, and it isn't possible for a single person to get all of it without the expenditure of a LOT of effort each year.

If you would like to help out with some of the maintenance and preservation of the Forest, then I would ask that you pull these weeds out whenever you see them and pile them along the path. I will come by and collect them every few days until the earnest start of summer. What does garlic mustard look like up close?

Well, they have broad, somewhat heart-shaped leaves with a serrated edge. As you can see from the photo above, they usually occur in tight clumps of plants, and so if you see one, you will quite likely encounter others nearby. When the are in bloom, their flowers are at the very top of a long stalk and are small and white. Presently, though, they are not quite in bloom:

Garlic mustard

The best way to pull these plants (and most plants) is to pull as much of their roots out of the ground, holding the plant at its base (i.e., where the plant comes out of the ground).

Right now, one management goal is to try and ensure that no garlic mustard becomes established on the north side of the property. Therefore: if you see some growing there, please go ahead and pull them out by the roots. Just make sure to pile your pullings by the side of the path.

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