Winter is the time for daydreaming about planting. Local conservation districts have started their native seedling sales. Place your orders soon!
Native Seedling Sales
Benzie Conservation District: Now through April 13, at 4:30pm
Grand Traverse Conservation District: Now through March 30th
Leelanau Conservation District: Now through April 6th
Manistee Conservation District: Now through March 31st
Keep an eye out for native plant sales in the near future as well.
January 18th was National Michigan Day!
The Great Lakes and natural landscape are only a couple reasons to celebrate our great state. So many Michiganders enjoy what Michigan has to offer; hiking, biking, boating, and hunting are just a few ways Michiganders recreate in this beautiful state. Keeping invasive species at bay is a large part of maintaining it's beauty. Get out there and enjoy, but remember to Play, Clean, Go.
Don't forget that invasive species can spread easily in winter and summer. Play, Clean, Go should be practiced no matter what time of year it is.
Read the following article by MSU Extension for more details on the threat of aquatic invasive species spread in winter.
Source Populations | Treatments
Phragmites Source Populations
240 acres treated
Japanese/Giant Knotweed Source Populations
7 acres, Veterans Oak Grove Drive (VOGD) treated
ISN hosted two programs focused on Japanese barberry this season; Japanese Barberry Dumpster Days and Japanese Barberry Buyback. Both events were a success!
Japanese Barberry Dumpster Days
Two events were held; one in Grand Traverse County at the Grand Traverse Conservation District and one in Manistee County in collaboration with the Manistee Conservation District. Over 125 plants were collected during both events.
Japanese Barberry Business Buyback
Thirteen businesses participated in this event which included removal of their Japanese barberry and replacement with native species. One-hundred-forty-four Japanese barberry were removed and replaced with natives. ISN was able to provide this service at no-cost to the participants with funds from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
Click here to check out some of the photos.
In addition to these events ISN also hosted workbees at six sites in Manistee County.
Additional information on Japanese barberry
On October 3rd, ISN partnered with the City of Frankfort and Periwinkle Garden Club to remove Japanese barberry in Rotary Park - located right downtown. Incorporated into the landscape many years ago, the 27 plants had extensive root systems and the work was a challenge. That being said, our incredible volunteers were relentless and now, beautiful natives are displayed instead of the former invasive species. Thank you to all who helped with this project! Some photos from the event are featured below. For more, please visit our website.
Through a Forestry Assistance Program grant from the DNR Michigan Invasive Species Grant Program, the well used hiking trails at Pelizzri Natural Area at the base of the Old Mission Peninsula will be implementing treatments to control the spread of oak wilt.
The disease was identified in the summer of 2017 and the township was awarded a cost-share grant to cover 85% of the cost to treat the outbreak. Starting around the end of October, the park will be closed to the public while a cable skidding logging crew will be on site harvesting around 100 red oak trees that are more than likely root grafted to the diseased trees. Oak wilt fungus readily moves from diseased to healthy trees through root grafts up to the tree height distance away. A cable skidding crew will be able to access and remove the affected trees with the least amount of impact on the highly terrain. While the logging crew is on site, mature aspen trees that are starting to deteriorate and become hazardous to the public, will also be harvested and sent to a sawmill. All trees will be utilized and proceeds from the sale will go back into improvements at the park. Seeding to nature grasses/wildflowers, and planting of native shrubs and trees.
Once the trees are cut, an herbicide will be applied to the cut stumps that will kill oak root systems so that the oak wilt fungus is not be able to spread to healthy trees on the park and to the neighboring properties. Red oak is a dominate tree in the landscape throughout the Old Mission Peninsula. Ten trees that died from oak wilt this summer and, will be producing the fungal spore pads that aid in the overland spread of the fungus, will be milled, chipped or covered on site. Although all treatments being implemented on site represent approved oak wilt control practices.
The public is asked to use another area park while the logging is being done. Any questions can be directed to Kama Ross, District Forester for Leelanau, Benzie and Grand Traverse Conservation Districts, as the local grant administrator; 231-256-9783 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is an opportunity to aggressively help control the spread of oak wilt, a 100% fatal non-native disease to red oaks with best management practices. This highly visible site will help education landowners as to the preventative measures crucial to prevent the overland spread (no injuring of red oaks during the growing season) and how to effectively control outbreaks when they do occur.
Thank you Leelanau Conservancy for honoring ISN as Conservation Partner of the Year, it's a great honor!
ISN was recognized for a variety of work with Leelanau Conservancy, ranging from recruiting volunteers for workbee events, providing information and training on invasive plants and identification, treatment of invasive species, education and presentations, and our Go Beyond Beauty program.
For the second year running, ISN has treated giant hogweed (Heracleum mantegazzianum) in Manistee County. There are only 2 known populations, and with this plants severe human health implications, it's a major Early Detection and Response priority. We're pleased to report that this population was down to just 9 plants (1 adult and 8 juveniles); last year there were nearly 30, and 2 adults!
It's crucial for people to report sightings of all invasive species, but especially Early Detection plants like hogweed. Check out this great ID training module; there are some native look-alikes for this crazy plant.
On July 24 and 25, ISN Survey Technicians (Audrey and Sarah) and Coordinator (Katie) traveled to West Michigan take part in a Field Trip & Identification Workshop put on by 2 sister groups: West Michigan Conservation Network and Three Shores CISMA. In addition to the invaluable time spent sharing experiences with CISMAs (Cooperative Invasive Species Management Areas) from across the state, we also got hands-on experience identifying Early Detection species. Many of these invaders, such as swallow-wort, hemlock woolly adelgid, and Chinese yam, are not yet in Northwest Michigan. The chance to see these plants up close was fantastic! After careful decontamination at each site to be sure we weren't spreading these invasive species, we came back. We're looking forward to putting this experience into practice on the ground as we continue to survey our region for new populations and species this year and in the future.
Want to learn more about these plants, but don't have time for a road trip? MISIN ID Modules are very helpful in pointing out ID characteristics and distinguishing similar species. Species observed that are not yet present in Northwest Michigan: black swallow-wort, Chinese yam, European frog-bit, giant hogweed, hemlock woolly adelgid, yellow floating heart.
Elberta Beach Baby's Breath:Volunteers wield newly-donated spades, developed after a successful restoration effort on Crystal Lake
With only one workbee remaining (August 3rd) we have many people to thank! Dozens of volunteer hours have been committed to removing invasive baby's breath from Elberta Beach and ISN wants to thank everyone who participated in this summer's efforts to restore a special stretch of beach along Lake Michigan.
We also want to show extra appreciation to Bruce Baker, from Radius Garden, who donated five "Root Slayer" shovels to ISN! After tackling his own beach restoration project on Crystal Lake, in Benzie County, he developed a spade that would directly target the thick tap roots which baby's breath grows. They have been a great help!
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