Event encouraging people to remove invasive plant species begins today

ANN ARBOR, MI – Garlic and mustard weed week kicks off today, being done virtually and separately this year.

The event started at sunrise on Friday May 22 and will run until sunset on Sunday May 31 and is hosted by Ann Arbor Natural Area Preservation (NAP). The event is being held to encourage people to attract aggressive, non-native plants to Southeast Michigan and to promote the use of native plants only in local yards and gardens, according to a press release from NAP.

“The removal of garlic mustard will allow native plants and wildflowers to thrive, encouraging a diversity of native wildlife, from small mammals to butterflies,” the press release said.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic will require certain safety precautions this year. Participants should remove invasive plants from their own yards or city-owned natural areas, the press release said. In doing so, participants are encouraged to maintain a social distance and not to touch any plants, gloves, bags, snacks or any other item belonging to anyone outside their family.

The invasive species that NAP recommends plucking are garlic mustards, lady’s arugula, and narrow-leaf bitter watercress. Drawings and descriptions of these plants can be found on his website.

Participants are also encouraged to share their attractions for the Stewardship Network’s Spring Invasive Species Challenge. Web page. The press release says to enter “NAP” in the “affiliation” box and where the plants were pulled up.

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