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Himalayan Balsam on Turnpike Field

21st May 2024 @ 6:06am – by Steve Elliott
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On Sunday, 10 Audlemites spent an exciting hour or so pulling the balsam along the side of the brook and the boardwalk -- its certainly thriving this year!!

Himalayan Balsam has a very pretty flower and is loved by many insects, particularly bees, due to its huge nectar content that's greater than other native species -- but it is also an invasive species. It grows and spreads very rapidly and can smother other vegetation and also adversely affect indigenous species by attracting pollinators (e.g. insects) at the expense of indigenous species. So the objective is to control it, not eradicate it, particularly near the brook so that it's seeds don't travel to neighbouring fields -- something it's very good at!

You may see various piles of the pulled plants. Professional advice is to leave it to rot. Disposing of it is unnecessary and also expensive as it must be disposed as controlled waste.

So, on behalf of Turnpike Field Working Group, many thanks to everyone who volunteered their time to help.

There is still a lot of very new growth, so there will be another session in a few weeks time, once its bigger and easier to pull -- watch this space!!

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