The face in the stump that is one of the sights at Lillian Hoffar Park. Sept. 7 from 9:45 a.m. to 1:00 p.m will see volunteers join the Greater Victoria Green Team and Friends of North Saanich Parks at the park. (Nick Murray/News Staff)

Green Team seeks for recruits in North Saanich counter attack on invasive plants

Exercise, meet people and learn at Lillian Hoffar Park clear-up

The Greater Victoria Green Team are calling for volunteers to help clear invasive species from Lillian Hoffar Park.

The clear-up is set for Saturday, Sept. 7 from 9:45 a.m. to 1 p.m. The park is tucked away off McDonald Park Road.

Lillian Hoffar Park has been the target of restoration efforts for over 10 years and, with the help of the Friends of North Saanich Parks, roughly 80 per cent of all Daphne has been cleared, with efforts now underway to remove ivy and Himalayan blackberry.

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The two organizations regularly work together to clear unwanted plants, making space for native species to flourish. This is especially helpful to the local ecosystem as invasive plants often out-compete and overtake native plants.

As well as invasive species removal projects, the Green Team engage in a variety of eco-activities, including picking up garbage, harvesting vegetable beds and creating bird nesting boxes.

Both they and the Friends of North Saanich Parks extol the virtues of not only helping the environment but also using park clear-up sessions as opportunities to make friends, explore new locations and be active. In return for their sweat, new volunteers can learn first-hand about the environmental issues Lillian Hoffar and similar parks face. There are also skills to be gained, such as learning about stewardship, local food security and the diverse work being done by organizations within the CRD.

RELATED: North Saanich man cuts a swathe through invasive species

An added bonus is learning from local hero Tom Richards, who has single-handedly cleared multiple dump trucks worth of unwanted plant matter from the park.

For those seeking registered volunteer hours, the Green Team say they can provide a letter confirming your labour, to be emailed as requested.

Gloves, tools and refreshments will be supplied, and all ages are welcome. No experience is necessary, but volunteers aged 18 years and under will need a parent or guardian to sign the Greater Victoria Green Team waiver before the event. This can be found at http://bit.ly/2GEDEO9.

For more information on the Greater Victoria Green Team visit greenteamscanada.ca. To learn more about the work of the Friends of North Saanich Parks go to http://fnsp.ca/index.html.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

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