Hand-tools*, perseverance, sturdy clothing, tough shoes, and a good pair of leather gloves are what is necessary to tackle blackberry brambles. It also helps to have neighbors that are willing to lend a hand cutting, or able to give up yard debris containers.
*I prefer hand-tools for two important reasons. First, they are quiet to use. I enjoy hearing the sounds of nature while working. Second, hand-tools are accurate and cut only when and where I want them to. As a result, native plants are not sacrificed during invasive removal.
This job was especially challenging because it was on a steep slope. And… to make matters worse, the vines were well established. Most were at least three-quarters of an inch in diameter. All crept over land, up tree trunks, over limbs and had anchor roots at the end of 15 – 30 foot long branching tendrils.
About eighty-percent of this patch was removed. Vines growing at the edge of the riparian zone were left because it is likely there are song sparrows and other small birds beginning to claim territory for nest-building. Clearing will continue in the late fall.
Native plants donated by Clean Water Services Native Plant Program are being planted at the top of the stream bank, and along the slope. Choke Cherry Trees, Red-flowering Currants, Crab Apple Trees, and Scouler Willows will grow where Himalayan Blackberries once tried to take stronghold.
Want to learn about invasive plants?
Plan to attend a Weed Watcher Workshop, or similar training, in your area. Folks who live in Washington County, Oregon are in luck.
FREE Weed Watcher Trainings
Multiple dates from 6:00pm-8:00pm
Worried about invasive plants and other weeds?
Our FREE Weed Watcher workshops will train you to identify the species of most concern now and report them. Meet these plants up close and personal in our Speed Dating round, and take home a free weed id guide. All workshops run from 6-8pm and include a light snack. Please RSVP at http://www.swcd.net/workshops-education/weed-watchers/ or via Facebook.
Dates and Locations
Tuesday April 26 Tigard Public Works Building, 8777 Burnham Street, Tigard
Thursday April 28 Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge, 19255 SW Pacific Hwy, Sherwood
Wednesday May 4 West Hills Unitarian Universalist Fellowship,
8470 SW Oleson Rd., Portland
Wednesday May 11 Tualatin Valley Water District, 1850 SW 170th Ave, Beaverton