FERTILE, Minn. – The University of Minnesota-Crookston Natural Resources Club will lead a buckthorn removal demonstration project from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday, October 8 at the Agassiz Environmental Learning Center, 400 Summit Ave. SW, Fertile. The public is invited to attend to learn how to identify and control buckthorn, an invasive non-native shrub, and help if they wish.
Laura Bell, UMC Natural Resources Department Laboratory Manager and Natural Resources Club Advisor, will provide information on the life cycle of buckthorn, including seed viability which must be monitored for several years. Buckthorn grows from seeds or suckers. The method of control to be demonstrated will be to cut the buckthorn at its base and apply a chemical product to the stump which the plant will lower into its roots and kill it, thus avoiding suckering if the plant has only been cut. .
Buckthorn retains its leaves later in the fall than almost any other shrub or tree and is therefore easy to identify. Buckthorn has invaded the understory of the Duckstad Woods and spread along the Sand Hill River, but is not yet so prevalent in the fertile sand hills.
Volunteers are invited to help control the spread of this aggressive invasive species to prevent it from overtaking more desirable natural species at the Agassiz ELC site.
For more information about the program or to get involved in the ongoing monitoring of buckthorn, contact Wayne Goeken, Executive Director of Agassiz ELC, at (218) 280-0516.