Tuckahoe Park Habitat on the Mend…

by Mary McLean

July 2013:  Dangerous Plants on the Run!

You may have seen the warning signs “Don’t walk off the trail.” Plant specialist placed them to protect pets and people. Arlington County hired Invasive Plant Control (IPC) to help improve Tuckahoe’s habitat. IPC employees are specially licensed and trained. Only the most environmentally suitable chemical, a glyphosate-based herbicide, was used on non-native plant species. A sturdy crew of four bush-wacked throughout Tuckahoe Park, giving no ground to the plants harming Tuckahoe’s habitat. The dead, brown-leaved plants indicate plants killed by the treatment.

Plants Removed or Treated:
Norway maple, Asian bittersweet, Winter creeper, English ivy, Japanese holly, Prunus avium, Prunus subhirtella, Golden Rain tree, Malus spp., California privet, Chinese barberry, Callery pear (Bradford pear), White mulberry, Amur bush honeysuckle, and Multiflora rose.

Questions?
Please contact Sarah Archer, Arlington County Invasive Removal Coordinator.

August 2013:  Natives are back!

Grow Zone sign

The “Grow Zone,” replanted with natives by Eagle Scout, Jacob Heidig, has flowers in bloom. Rare native Smartweed, Great Blue Lobelia, Cardinal Flower, orchid Joe-Pye, fucia Bergamot, Ox Eye Sunflower, and purple New England Aster.

New England Aster Sympyotrichum novae-angliae

New England Aster Sympyotrichum novae-angliae

Great Blue Lobelia, Lobelia Siphilitica

Great Blue Lobelia, Lobelia Siphilitica

Bergamot Bee Balm, Monarda didyma

Bergamot Bee Balm, Monarda didyma

Joe Pye's tall, stately, pale orchard umbels tower over the Grow Zone of Native Knotweed, Heath Aster, and wild sunflowers

Joe Pye’s tall, stately, pale orchard umbels tower over the Grow Zone of Native Knotweed, Heath Aster, and wild sunflowers

Native Pink Knotweed Pennsylvania Smartweed Persicaria Pensylvanica

Native Pink Knotweed Pennsylvania Smartweed Persicaria Pensylvanica


Native plants give food and shelter butterflies and bees.  Insects provide critical food for baby birds we enjoy watching. Remember, we cannot have our fruits and vegetable without those pollinators!

ARMN volunteer Melanie adopted Tuckahoe Park.

ARMN volunteer Melanie adopted Tuckahoe Park.

Melanie LaForce and Bill Ross removed harmful plants crowding blooming natives.  Bill Ross built the outdoor classrooms and NWF Habitat.

Mary and Bill in front of orchids umbels.

Mary and Bill in front of orchard umbels.

September 2013 – Great News!

Here is Cardinal Flower blooming outside the “Grow Zone!”

Cardinal flower, Lobelia Cardinalis, blooming outside the Grow Zone.

Cardinal flower, Lobelia Cardinalis, blooming outside the Grow Zone.

The native plants Jacob Heidig put in the park for his Eagle Scout Service Project are spreading. This is exciting!Our park manager, Kevin Stalica, chose just the right plants. Lacy-white heath aster start blooming now.

Photos by Mary McLean.

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