In the Garden

“Beautiful in your garden, but be aware”

Yellow Flag Iris (Iris pseudacorus)
Yellow Flag Iris (Iris pseudacorus)

Gardens are a beautiful refuge however if invasive species are planted or unmanaged they can quickly spread from your property to your neighbors’ and natural areas. Horticulture has been identified as one of the main human pathways that causes the spread and introduction of invasive species.

An example of an invasive plant that “jumped the garden fence” is the Yellow Flag Iris. At first glance it’s a beautiful yellow flower, however its aggressive nature is choking out wetlands and impacting native animal and plant habitat.

Here is how YOU can help:

  • Ask your local greenhouse and gardening store to become PlantWise certified to ensure that they are not selling or displaying invasive species
  • Know what you grow!  Avoid purchasing invasive plants. Click here to educate yourself on the top invasive species that are still sold and traded in the horticulture industry and choose safe alternatives. Be suspicious of exotic plants promoted as “fast-spreaders” or “vigorous self-seeders” as they are often invasive species. Check out these resources, Grow Me Instead BrochureGrow Me Instead Booklet, Seed Mixtures and the CKISS EcoGarden plant lists.
  • Avoid picking plants from roadsides, gravel pits or other disturbed areas
  • Control and dispose of invasive plants prior to flower or seed development. Click here for tips on responsible disposal.
  • Learn how to identify invasive species in your region
  • Report a weed

Not sure if you have an invasive species in your garden? Email a picture to:

Disposing of your Invasive Species Garden Waste

  • Click here for tips on responsible disposal.
  • Dead-head and properly dispose of invasive plant seeds, seed heads or fruit prior to flowering and seed maturity
  • All landfills within the RDCK and RDKB accept invasive plant species for free. Ensure your material is bagged in clear plastic bags and notify the attendant that you have invasive plant species. Plants must be identifiable through the bag. For more information please see the RDCK Resource Recovery Bylaw
  • Do not dump garden waste in public parks, natural areas, and roadsides, it is ILLEGAL to do so and is associated with hefty fines
  • Avoid putting invasive plants in your compost, as they often quickly re-establish

An important note about Knotweed!

Japanese Knotweed
Japanese Knotweed

Knotweed can only be effectively controlled with chemical control – for more information please contact Kootenay Weed Control, 250-512-7378. Unfortunately  digging, cutting, burning or other methods have proved to be ineffective and actually can contribute to its spread, it can spread from very small fragments of its roots and stems! Mechanical control of knotweed is not recommended.  For more information on knotweed click here. 

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