Langley Eco-Crew tackles invasive plants

The summer students with LEPS are restoring natural habitat near Brydon Lagoon.

A Langley eco-crew is tearing out invasive species this summer, and hopes to help educate landowners on how they can help.

The Langley Environmental Partners Society has sent its summer student workers out to clear out invasive plants on public lands, and one of the plants they’ve attacked is purple loosestrife.

Eco-crew leader Carly Stromsten said the teams have switched from ripping out all the loosestrife to trimming the flower heads off.

If the heads are properly disposed off, it can help prevent the plant from spreading its seeds further.

Locals can do that too – if they have a pair of rubber boots to get into the low, marshy areas that loosestrife grows. The weed is commonly seen in waterways and ditches across Langley.

The big project in recent weeks for the eco-crew has been attacking Himalayan blackberry.

Another invasive species, it can take over open fields and choke out native vegetation.

This week, the team is working on removing it near Brydon Lagoon in Langley City.

The area has many native bird species, and getting rid of the blackberry brambles allows native plants that feed and shelter those birds to flourish, noted Stromsten.