Ending the dysfunctional relationship between you and your landscape
April 21, 2010 § 2 Comments
Caught in a dysfunctional relationship with your environment? Awareness is the first step to recovery and moving on.
Readers who are ready to break up with the invasive species in their lives are in luck. While we at Creekfreak enjoy lavender, fruit trees, and other innocuous non-natives as much as anyone, we also get more than a little grumpy when we are trying to hike a nice SoCal creek and end up wading through forests of palm, arundo, fountain grass, sticky eupatorium (which I call Sticky Yoopy), nasturtium, and fennel, or mustard, and cape ivy, or vinca, and himalayan blackberry and… anyway, you get the picture. “Dear Washingtonia felifera, It’s not that you don’t have wonderful qualities, but you proliferate, you hang around, you catch fire so easily… This is it, we’re through. I’m sorry.”
You may already be familiar with my invasive species mini-rants (for example: 1, 2), but maybe not. You may be thinking “who? what?” If you don’t know what I’m talking about, writer Ilsa Setziol’s LA Times series on specific weedy plants that harm habitat is for you. Check out her series, Gardening Hangovers. There’s also Cal-IPC (California Invasive Plants Council) which brings science and policy together to address the issue at the governmental level.
Many of these invaders are garden escapees. Which is why Emily Green’s recent posts about the LA Arboretum’s interest in rethinking its mission is so exciting. As an institution that shapes how we landscape, the Arboretum has the potential to bring us to a new awareness of how to live in support of our native habitat – and end the bad habits of these gnarly invasives and water consumption. But the new director needs to hear from you as he did from Emily, so go forth…