Once you know a thing, there is no unknowing it. Unfortunately for me, I became aware of the negative impact of garlic mustard, and around this time of year I feel compelled to try to stop it’s spread. I wish I had more time to garden in our woods and wetlands!
After all these years pulling and cutting garlic mustard, you’d think I might be an expert on it, but I just learned from my good friend, Lindsay Knudsvig, that the seeds of garlic mustard form in what are called siliques.
This is empowering information as I was previously focused only on the flowering garlic mustard i.e., preventing the flowers from maturing by cutting or pulling the plants. Now, my garlic mustard fighting season will continue so long as I can locate and collect the siliques.
I recently spent three days pulling and mowing at the Ottawa Lake Fen SNA. Check out this gallery of garlic mustard horrors.
I’m not using any herbicide on the garlic mustard and actually seeing very positive results just cutting and pulling. Hand pulling is definitely the best way to go when the garlic mustard is nestled in among native plants. I pulled the garlic mustard from the area around the Scuppernong Spring.
In the areas where it is carpeting the ground, like shown above, mowing is great option. Either way, eradicating invasive plants is a wonderful way to spend time in nature. Check out these morels I stumbled upon while pulling garlic mustard at the Hartland Marsh.
Last Saturday I was joined by Arrowhead High School Instructor Greg Bisbee, and a group of young people from the school, along with Marsha and Jeff from The Friends of the Hartland Marsh, for a garlic mustard pulling party. We worked along the hillside at the Cottonwood Gazebo and north, across the village corn field, on the Waukesha County Land Conservancy property.
I spent a wonderful week camping at site #335, my favorite spot at the Ottawa Lake Campground. Thanks to Jim, Bob and Mark for stopping by to play some guitar and enjoy the campfire.
We have been pulling spotted knapweed and cutting out brush from the lupine fields on the west slope of the sand prairie for 3-4 years now. Nature is responding and in a few years the whole hillside will be covered with lupine!
I’m a point and shoot photographer and hope someday to learn how to use my camera. Until then…
See you at The Springs!