Normand Boulet, CCA
M.D. of Smoky River No. 130
I’m sure everyone is familiar with the saying “April showers bring May flowers.”
For most people, that brings happy thoughts, beautiful meadows with gorgeous blossoms dancing in the sunlight. For a weed inspector, it may be a slightly less happy scenario.
In addition, I would have to adjust the timing to be more accurate for our short season; “September rains, lead to next year pains.” Hey that isn’t half bad! Allow me to explain, please…
We are running into a number of Ox eye daisy situations in 2017 (as well as other weeds), but the Ox eye really stand out. See the photo on Page 13.
I believe all the moisture we had last fall, as well as the extended fall growing season allowed the seeds from many biennial and perennial weeds to germinate and establish. Raymond Rey, the M.D. Weed Inspector responsible for lands North of Highway 49 has encountered at least two Ox eye infestations which had lain dormant for more than 10 years.
I have been with the M.D. for 10 years now, and this year was the first time they have popped up since I joined the team. So, conditions last fall or early this spring were just right to encourage those weeds, which have lain dormant all this time, to make a go at it again.
Fortunately our intrepid weed inspectors, aided by all other M.D. staff and some residents and visitors are on the lookout, report those invasive plants so they can be dealt with.
As a landowner you may not be exactly thrilled when we stop in and talk to you about weeds, we know it takes your time away from other priorities whether they be farm duties, work or time away from a stay at the lake with family.
However, dealing with that small patch, preventing it from going to seed makes a huge difference for you, your neighbours and the area’s crop, pasture and hay land. Early Detection Rapid Response (EDRR) – dealing with a small patch, preventing it from setting seed and becoming a wide-spread issue saves everyone money. It’s also beneficial to the environment as those weed issues take over native areas and remove food sources for all sorts of beneficial insects and other organisms.
Controlling those small patches now means much less herbicide being used in the future, spot spraying vs total field spraying in future years.
So if you see a Daisy growing in a spot you didn’t plant one, chances are it’s an invasive plant. Give us a call; we can help with proper identification and control.
Or snap a photo and text it to me, every invasive plant that is kept from going to seed can mean thousands of seeds not being added to the seed bank creating future issues, and hundreds of thousands in the case of Scentless chamomile.
Call the M.D. of Smoky River Ag Services department to report invasive plants, whether they be in the M.D. or in the Towns and Villages within our borders, or to ask for help confirming their identity. Call (780) 837-2221, extension 121, or contact me directly, call my cell or text photos to (780) 837-0043.