Saddle up, pardners. Volunteers are being deputized to round up some weedy invaders in and around Rock Creek Park.
On Saturday, September 25th (which is also National Public Lands Day), the National Capital Partnership for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISM) and Rock Creek Conservancy are leading their first “Weed Wrangle,” during which volunteers will remove invasive species and give native plants more room to grow and thrive.
The Weed Wrangle is a multi-site event structured like Rock Creek Conservancy’s annual Extreme Cleanup. Local Weed Wrangle sites include:
- Broad Branch Stream from 9 a.m. to noon
- Rock Creek Picnic Area #1 (across Tilden Street from Peirce Mill) from 9 to 11:30 a.m.
- Melvin Hazen West from 2 to 4 p.m.
And if volunteer spots fill up at those cleanups, there are many opportunities to help out at other locations.
John Burwell is leading the Broad Branch Weed Wrangle, and he is well-acquainted with the place and the job. He and his band of weed whacking volunteers got started last winter. If the weekend temperatures were above freezing, they were out there.
Volunteers should bring their own gloves, water and snacks. Rock Creek Conservancy recommends long sleeves to protect against bugs and poison ivy, and shoes people don’t mind getting muddy. And, it asks that everyone wear a mask.
If you’re interested but the event doesn’t fit into your schedule, there are always more weeds to wrangle. Rock Creek Conservancy regularly adds more invasive species-clearing events to its calendar. For example, additional invasive species removals are scheduled at Melvin Hazen East on October 2nd and Melvin Hazen West on October 9th. And for more experienced volunteers interested in becoming certified Weed Warriors or brushing up on their previous training, there’s an event at Beach Drive and Joyce Road on October 16th.