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  • Writer's pictureMark L. Johnson

TA Tidbits #50-Invasive Grasses Too Close To Home



Buffelgrass-Brittlebush Drive-Dove Mountain (11/29/23)


 


On a recent hike, my wife (Shirley) and I noticed a patch of buffelgrass on Brittlebush Drive (access road to the Torolita Preserve-North Entrance). This is only 750' from the Tortolita Preserve!


As we reported in the past, buffelgrass outcompetes saguaros for space, nutrients and water, slowly eliminating saguaros from the landscape. It also poses a serious fire risk, burning hot and fast.


Buffelgrass infestation in the Tortolita mountains and the foothills is well known but this is getting a little close to home. Fortunately, buffelgrass has not yet been sighted in the Tortolita Preserve but it could get infested if we are not vigilant.


The next day we grabbed our shovels and went back to the site and removed the buffelgrass and loaded it in the car and put it in our green waste disposal bin. It was hard work because the buffelgrass was deeply rooted in the rock rip rap. See the before and after photos below.




So be on guard in and around your neighborhoods as invasive plants like buffelgrass, fountain grass, stinknet, tamarisk, etc., may have taken root. With a little muscle power, most small patches can easily be removed and eliminate spreading. If you see larger areas of invasive plants, let us know and we can call in the troops to remove by hand or possibly spray.


The Arizona Native Plant Society-Invasive Plant page is a great resource for photos and references to learn more about the various invasive plants in Arizona.

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