Edmonton dog owners being asked to help fight noxious weed
It’s a pretty purple flower called Field Scabious, and it’s slowing taking over the Terwillegar Dog Park.
On Saturday, pets and people who frequent the park joined city staff in putting an end to the weed as part of Bark in the Park 2018.
Trees, along with other vegetation, were planted in the park in hopes the new growth would choke out the weed.
The Terwillegar Dog Park currently has the largest infestation of Field Scabious — otherwise known as knautia arvensis — in the city.
“Hopefully we can stop it here versus having it spread to other locations — harder to control areas,” Valarie Dacik said with the City of Edmonton.
City staff were also on hand to explain what Edmontonians can do to help prevent the weed from spreading.
“Keeping your dogs brushed, boots cleaned off when you come, [and if you’re] riding bikes through, make sure you’re pulling out all foliage out of the spokes,” Dacik added. “We do want to reduce our use of herbicides.”
The fussy-leafed, low-lying flower that blooms into a purple rosette is a provincially regulated noxious weed that spread quite easily and is capable of “choking out all native species.”
The City of Edmonton closed the Terwillegar Dog Park for a day in July 2017 to spray the weeds.
In 2015, City Council approved a herbicide ban with exceptions, one of which is the use of herbicide to control noxious weeds. Herbicide is used on a very small percentage of Edmonton parkland.
The city is also in the process of assessing its 1,465 sports fields for dandelions and spraying herbicide where necessary. The city is using iron chelate for that treatment.
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