Students from the School of Natural Resources removed invasive species from a stretch of forest on the main trail near the stone gate on Saturday, May 7th. We mainly used hedge clippers to cut Japanese Barberry near its base and then used small paint brushes to apply herbicide.
Japanese Barberry (scientific name Berberis thunbergii) is a dense, spiny shrub that has bright red berries. It is not native to North America and, like other invasive plants, can alter our ecosystems. According to the National Park Service, Japanese Barberry can alter pH, nitrogen levels, and biological activity in soil. It also displaces native plants and reduces wildlife habitat and forage. Japanese Barberry is a common plant used in landscaping for privacy hedges, but they spread rapidly causing them to turn up in places like Stinchfield Woods!