We originally found out about the WEED Warrior program through the C and O Canal National Park. The reason we got involved with this program is because of our field based Global Ecology program at Poolesville High School. Alumni from our high school encouraged our participation in the Montgomery Parks WEED Warrior program.
The WEED Warrior program deals with the removal of invasive plant species. Invasives are plants, usually from other countries, that take over native species’ habitats by rapid growth. The seven focus invasive species at the C and O Canal are: English ivy, wineberry, Japanese honeysuckle, Multiflora rose, Oriental bittersweet, bush honeysuckle and garlic mustard.
The two invasive species we focused on were Multiflora rose and wineberry. We chose to focus on these two species because they were the most prevalent and easiest to remove. We wanted to make the largest impact on the environment as possible. The Multiflora rose and wineberry are pretty easy to identify and are not easily mistaken for native species.
We thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the WEED Warrior program and we strongly encourage others to participate. Volunteers get to enjoy the outdoors while making an impact on the local environment. It is a program that allows you to see an immediate result which is very rewarding. Native species will be allowed the chance to thrive through the work volunteers do.
The Poolesville High School Global Ecology program engages students with the sciences and allows us to go on a lot of field trips to reinforce class room learning as well as give back to our community. The WEED Warrior project was one of many rewarding parts of the Global Ecology program.
To find how to get involved with WEED Warrior program, go to the Montgomery Parks webpage.
By Kali Wolin, Kelly Brown, and Laura Lowman, High school students at Poolesville High School