All content, of both the original and this blog, is written from my point of view and is my opinion. I believe it to be accurate at the time it is written. ~ Kyle Prast, Brookfield resident since 1986

Thursday, May 05, 2011

Remember, Saturday, May 7th is WEED-OUT day at Mary Knoll Park

Though the temperatures might seem more like it is March or April, the calendar says it is the first weekend in May, and that means it is time for the annual Garlic Mustard Pull WEED-OUT at Mary Knoll Park in Brookfield.

If you have noticed, the spring plants are a bit behind this year (due to the colder weather) but don't worry there will be nothing for you to do--Garlic Mustard doesn't wait for the sun to shine to make its presence known!

If enough strapping men show up on Saturday, there might be an opportunity to do some BUSHWHACKING again.

Last year some Boy Scouts and their dads attacked the invasive Buckthorn trees and Honeysuckle bushes, clearing an area near the tennis courts at the park. These plants are a problem because they crowd out good, native plants. In addition, Honeysuckle bushes produce little red, orange, or yellow berries that look good, but actually irritate the digestive systems of birds. (The birds eat them and then suffer the G.I. consequences later!)

As usual, the WEED-OUT will be held rain or shine, from 9am to noon, on Saturday, May 7, 2011.

For those of you not familiar with Garlic Mustard...

Garlic Mustard is a terrible invasive weed that if left alone will completely take over any area it is allowed to grow in. Area residents, Patty Gerner and family, have been been battling this thug at Mary Knoll Park since 1997. Because of their efforts, along with the help of the annual Weed Out teams, the Garlic Mustard is in retreat and the native wild flowers are making a comeback.

I have participated in several of the Weed Outs and always enjoyed them. Unlike Bushwhacking, the work isn't difficult and Brookfield's Park & Rec. Department provides large bags and will dispose of the weeds too. All you have to do is come prepared to work. They will even provide instruction! (Photo from past Weed Out.)

Do wear your gardening clothes and bring gloves. You might want a kneeling pad or mat and a water bottle. Showers are forecast, so a rain poncho and hat might be a good idea. (Wet weather makes it easier to pull the weeds.)

Excerpts from the Parks, Recreation & Forestry flier:

Who can participate?
Any interested individual or group This is an excellent community service project for any organization, school or church group, family, or private individual concerned about the environment and the City parks.

Why participate?

To help our native plants and animals survive so that we can continue to enjoy them. Garlic mustard is an invasive weed introduced on the east coast by early settlers for its alleged medicinal qualities and cooking. In our community it spreads rapidly, overtaking wildflowers, native tree and shrub seedlings. It then drives out animals, birds and insects that depend on a diversity of plant species for food and shelter. To Register, Call the Parks, Recreation & Forestry Office at (262) 796-6675. (Registration is not mandatory, but gives us an idea on how many volunteers to expect) “Project Partners”: The Gerner Family, Boy Scout Troop 23, Brookfield Central High School Key Club and UW-Extension

Rain or Shine!

You don't have to live near the park to participate. One year a woman from the north side of Brookfield came to learn how to go about eradicating the weed from her neighborhood park. I think she was hoping to form a group in her area to work on their park. Great idea.

Mary Knoll Park is located at 615 S. Sunnyslope Road, just south of the I-94 overpass bridge, in Brookfield.

See you there?

Past Garlic Mustard WEED-OUT Postings:
5th Annual Weed Out

4th Annual Weed Out

3rd Annual Weed Out (with photos)

It is worth saving (pictures from Weed Out and wildflowers)

Oh, the shame! (photos and tips for evicting Garlic Mustard)

Weed control links: Garlic Mustard and garlic mustard's pretty cousin, Dame's Rocket. (It can take over native areas too.) Garlic mustard should be thrown in the trash and labeled, Garlic Mustard: Do not compost.

Links: Practically Speaking, Fairly Conservative, RandyMelchert, Betterbrookfield, Jay Weber, Vicki McKenna, CNS News, Mark Levin, Breitbart BigGovernment, The Heritage Foundation

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