If you have been through the Giving Garden lately, you may have noticed it is looking a little over grown and weedy. We want you to know why.
Despite our Giving Garden volunteer’s best efforts to keep the weeds at bay and keep the garden looking nice, it has unfortunately been overrun by a very aggressive, noxious weed known as Wild Parsnip.
If you are not familiar, here’s some information on Wild Parsnip and why it’s so difficult to handle:
“Everyone is sensitive to wild parsnip and you do not need to be sensitized by a prior exposure to develop burns or blisters. You can brush against wild parsnip plants and not be affected. Parsnip is only dangerous when the plant sap from broken leaves or stems gets on your skin.” ( https://fyi.uwex.edu/weedsci/2001/07/04/wild-parsnip-3/ )
“Tips to avoid exposure include wearing gloves, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Planning control activities for the early evening will minimize sunlight and thus activation of the blistering process. If you are exposed to the plant juice, wash the contaminated areas thoroughly as soon as possible.”
We want you to know that we are working hard on this and we have enlisted the help of the Town of New Glasgow and the Dept of Agriculture to find a long term solution as it is beyond the capacity of our volunteer group to safely handle.
We are very thankful to the crew with the Town of New Glasgow who were at the garden weeding yesterday and will be weeding regularly. They are diligently working to help us try and keep on top of this.
Of course, this saddens us, but it really is beyond anyone’s control and our area is not the only one affected, this is a province and nationwide issue.
We will have signs posted at the entry ways of the garden for awareness. We want you to be aware that it is present and know what it looks like. We ask you to refrain from touching anything in the garden or pathways to remain as safe as possible and to supervise children at all times. This is good practice for any public space/pathway in the province or beyond. Should you come into contact with Wild Parsnip, DO NOT touch your eyes and wash your hands thoroughly.
We thank you for your understanding and co-operation while we continue to work hard rectify this situation.
More on Wild Parsnip from around North America: