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Columns

Conservation@Home: Learn how to keep out invasive plants, and what to replace them with

John Church
John Church

Happy Fourth of July! It is hard to believe we are already at that time of year. It has been a rainy summer so far and numerous people have commented on trying to keep up with the weeds in the yard and garden.

Many people struggle with controlling pesky invasive plants on their property. On Tuesday, Aug. 7, interested persons can learn more by attending the “Identifying and Controlling Invasive Plants in the Home Landscape” program at 7 p.m. at the Oswego Public Library, 32 W. Jefferson St., Oswego.

The program is co-sponsored by The Conservation Foundation, University of IL Extension and Oswego Public Library.

Homeowners in northeastern Illinois who have gardens, wooded areas, ponds or other open areas around their home have a high probability that they have been invaded by non-native plants, which can be difficult to control and damaging to desirable plants. Several species which can cause extensive damage include plants such as garlic mustard, buckthorn, honeysuckle and phragmites.

Now is a good time to learn more, since many control measures can best be done in the fall.

Program participants will learn about how to identify invasive plants, the impact of their presence and possible control techniques.

One of the questions for homeowners when removing invasive plants is “what are the preferred plants to use as replacements?”

Identification of different shrub and tree species for replacements will also be discussed.

Speakers will include Richard Hentschel, U of IL Extension horticulture educator, and me, John Church, TCF Kendall County program director.

To register for the program, go to the library’s calendar at oswego.lib.il.us/evanced/lib/eventcalendar.asp, then go to the Aug. 7 program date and click on it. For more information about this free program, phone 630-553-0687, ext. 204.

Controlling invasive species is one component of the TCF Conservation@Home program, which assists homeowners with control techniques, native plant information, stormwater management and other practices.

This program is part of the TCF mission to “improve the health of our communities by preserving and restoring natural areas and open space, protecting rivers and watersheds, and promoting stewardship of our environment.”

With more than 4,000 members, TCF is one of the region’s oldest and largest not-for-profit land and watershed conservation organizations. Since it was founded in 1972, TCF has helped preserve more than 35,000 acres of open space, restored and cleaned miles of rivers and streams, and educated thousands of kids by engaging them in nature and the outdoors.

Work is focused in DuPage, Kane, Kendall and Will counties to preserve and restore nature in your neighborhood. Find out more at theconservationfoundation.org.

• John Church is the Kendall County program director at The Conservation Foundation.

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