3 C's are the Key
"The love of gardening is a seed once sown that never dies" - Gertrude Jekyll
Protect what you love with the 3 C's of conscious gardening! Your garden is at great risk from invasive species which out-compete native species and alter local environmental conditions. By compromising native plant populations, invaders in-turn affect wildlife populations by decreasing available habitat and food source. This Spring as you tend to your garden, be conscious of invasive species and use these tips from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry's 'Gardener Action Plan'.
1. Choose Native Plants: The fundamental rule of gardening is to choose plants that are native to your region. The Grow Me Instead Guides for Northern and Southern Ontario highlight excellent alternative species that provide similar function and appearance to the invasive plants you may appreciate having in your garden.
2. Compost Carefully: Even after being uprooted from your garden, invasive plants can sprout new roots and propagate nearby. Before adding uprooted invasives to your compost pile. leave them in a black garbage bag in the sun for one week. This will ensure they don't continue to grow unchecked in nearby areas.
3. Check the Pond: Invasive plants can spread in and out of your ornamental pond as well. Aquatic invasive plants can be just as threatening for their ability to grow quickly and deprive aquatic ecosystems of sunlight and oxygen. Keep your eyes peeled for the common aquatic invaders, but take extra care not to dump pond water and fish into other water bodies.