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Invasive Pull – Feb 3, 2024

We had a wonderful Invasive Pull today on Saturday, Feb 3, 2024. 20 volunteers came out (6 for their first time) to help with invasive removal. Recently, more youth have been coming out to volunteer with Free the Fern. Today, we were happy have 5 volunteers under the ages of 18 (with one volunteer being only 1.5 years old!). It was great to have such a diverse group of volunteers, gathering together to help remove invasive plants along the Red Alder Trail.

We met at the Douglas Fir Teaching Garden, under the towering fir trees. After a land acknowledgment, welcome, and safety talk, led by Free the Fern Executive Director, Grace, we headed south down the Red Alder Trail. Half our volunteers, overseen by Grace, focused on removing Herb Robert (or affectionately known as “stinky Bob” due to its pungent herbal fragrance). While, the other half of our volunteers, led by Free the Fern Vice President, Martin, focused on removing the more intimidating Himalayan blackberry and English ivy. Together, we succeeded in filling up 7 city green bins with 2,160 L of invasive plants!

After a short break for hot tea, juice, and snacks, we returned and focused on some native planting. The City of Vancouver, Green Streets Program, was kind enough to donate us some native shrubs, so we focused on planting 25 of those today. The shrubs included: 8 willow, 6 twinberry, 5 red elderberry, 4 Pacific ninebark, 1 thimbleberry, and 1 blue elderberry. It was great to see the native shrubs in the ground in an area once densely covered by English ivy.

Thank you to our amazing 20 volunteers for your help today: Adam, Annette, Brenda, Carla, Catherine, Chinonso, Ellie, Genesis, Genevieve, Grace, Jeannine, Lucy, Martin, Mary-Jo, Norm, Patrick, Robin, Tyler and Veronica.

Before & After Photos

Photos by Grace Nombrado & Ellie Weber