Back in March when we made our first Battle Of The Plants post, snow was still on the ground and we were working from memory. Now it’s July, the heat is here and in the humid damp weather we’ve been having many plants are madly growing! This past weekend I was finally able to take a walk (with my camera) and check on how the plant wars are progressing all over the farm.
In the hay fields and along the woodland edges I saw more daisies ( that are listed as invasive species) than black-eyed susans. I am happy to see some of those growing here.
When they fade I will harvest a few seeds to sow around the house. The black-eyed susans attract butterflies and birds just like milkweed!!!
We have some milkweed in the pastures and in different places near our garden. Butterflies and bees love it very much. And we like to make those polinators happy! There is even a program by David Suzuki that encourages people to plant milkweed especially for butterflies.
We still have wild parsnip growing along the roads. And worse, I saw some more around our little pond. At least it is growing close to a field we don’t maintain! Apparently this species likes this kind of spot. In the next week we will clean this field. We plan to make it into a new pasture for our goats, so it will be more closely supervised and with our help grazing will help encourage the right plants to grow. When we drive in the area we can see wild parsnips growing everywhere along the roadsides. It’s really, really an invasion !!
The cattails have grown in our ditches and I am almost positive these are the native ones we want to have.
In our bush flowering raspberry is growing well and we also have some next to our garage.It’s a beautiful plant.
A lot of the ground in our woodland is covered by the native plant Running Euonymus, also called Running Strawberry Bush.
Along the house I planted some Jackman Clematis and they are starting to grow.
As for the terrible Creeping Charlie, it’s really the worst invasion we’ve got! I think and hope we are taking the right steps to control it in our pastures. We took our time and waited before bringing the goats into the fields that have been invaded by this distructive plant. We let the grass and other plants grow to at least 20cm (8″) this gave the clover a chance to grow and get big enough to hold its own against the Creeping Charlie. When the goats have finished grazing in these pastures you can see that where there was a huge mass of Creeping Charlie last year it has now been reduced drastically and replaced by clover!!
So that is how things stand roughly halfway through the growing season. We’ll be back with another update in the autumn.
How you can help! Below are the links to Grow Me Instead flyers where you can find information on the native plants we want to encourage, and the invasive plants that need to be controlled!
Native plants will always grow better as they are used to our climate so they only need a little help to win the battle!
We also found this site, EddMaps. It’s a web-based mapping system to document the distribution of invasive species. Click here to read all about it!