Invasive Species Volunteer Squad, or IVSquad, originated back in August, 2013, in discussions with Irene Frentz, the Pocahontas Natural Resources Officer. I had made an offer to help with invasive plant removal, which she accepted. But she then requested that I leverage my effectiveness by engaging other volunteers to help. This was accomplished with the help of the scheduling websites used by Pocahontas VMN and Friends of Pocahontas. We started with an experimental Stiltgrass removal project in August and September. The next target was a large infestation of Oriental Wisteria. The Wisteria project started in November, 2013, and continued into July of this year.
The current phase of Wisteria control is herbicide treatment by a crew of trained applicators. Manual control by IVSquad will resume in spring when the effectiveness of the herbicide treatment can be observed. Meanwhile, we can turn our attention to other invasive plants in the park. There is no shortage of targets: Stiltgrass, Tree-of-heaven, Honeysuckle, Perilla Mint and others. The schedule is now for three hours a week, on Mondays, posted on www.meetup.com/Friends-of-Pocahontas-State-Park. Pocahontas VMN and Friends of Pocahontas volunteers are invited to help move IVSquad into its third year.
Thoughts on the park, its residents and how to preserve its natural beauty.