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PHRAGMITES CAMPAIGN AT WOLF ROAD PRAIRIE
This summer, SCGA launched the "Eliminate Phragmites Campaign" to begin the battle to rid this aggressive invasive species from the Wolf Road Prairie wetland.
Phragmites australis (Common reed) is a tall perennial grass that grows to heights of 15 feet or more and is found in or near shallow water. Phragmites thickets displace native wetland plants, alter hydrology and block sunlight to the aquatic community.
Phragmites, the scourge of Illinois wetlands, rapidly reproduces through the spread of seed and by root system cloning. It can quickly take over a high quality wetland in a matter of a few years if left unchecked.
This is the case at the Wolf Road Prairie wetland. Where there were some isolated clumps of Phragmites only a few years ago, today they have expanded their range exponentially and are posing a grave environmental threat to the integrity of the wetland.
The goal of SCGA is to raise funds to help eliminate this threat. Nearly $2,500 has been raised to date for phase one of the $5,000 "Eliminate Phragmites Campaign." SCGA has retained Witness Tree Native Landscapes, Inc. to conduct herbicide treatment of Phragmites under the supervision of Steve Byers, Illinois Nature Preserves Commission, with approval by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Forest Preserve District of Cook County. Now the insidious Phragmites is being stopped in its tracks. But the battle is far from won. Another $2,500 is needed for additional phase one herbicide treatments and follow-up treatments as necessary.
Our thanks to everyone who has contributed to the "Eliminate Phragmites Campaign". We invite those natural area advocates who believe it is crucial to maintain a high quality wetland ecosystem at Wolf Road Prairie to join us as we move ahead to eradicate Phragmites. 100% of all contributions go directly to the "Eliminate Phragmites Campaign".
Photos by Irene Hogstrom
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