Johnson Grass No Match for WC Volunteers

Posted on May 28, 2015 by Borderlands Restoration in Wildlife Corridors
Johnson Grass or Sorghum halapense is an invasive plant that is taking over native grasses in disturbed areas on the Wildlife Corridor property.

Johnson Grass or Sorghum halapense is an invasive plant that threatens to take over native grasses in disturbed areas on the Wildlife Corridor property.

Project Report by: Susan Englebry
In mid February, after a string of winter rains, a team of eight people with Japanese hand maddocks set out to try a strategy for reducing the advance of Johnson’s grass into new territory on the Wildlife Corridor property.  On a ridge where a roadway had been cut, was a new stand of JG poised to travel eastward into land with no JG.  The Wildlife Corridor, robust with stands of JG, made the project seem daunting, but within a couple hours of patient work, the mood changed from hopeless to victorious, and from there, a process developed that could be used to reduce the perimeter of large stands of JG.  We completely removed nearly 30 plants, flagged each that had been removed, discovered that rhizomes traveling under the crowns of side oats gramma withered underneath, and when the site was revisited, even after generous rains, the JG we had removed was completely gone and there was no re-sprouting.
The idea of containing Johnson’s grass moves closer to the possibility of eradication!
Susan Englebry is a compost queen with a lifetime of experience in the field of restoration. Wildlife Corridors  is happy to have her as a volunteer on the restoration team!

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