The Environment We Share on Anarchist Mountain


A link to FIRE-RESISTANT PLANTS: Fire-Resistant Plants | FireSmart BC

ATTENTION HOMEOWNERS DO NOT PUT INVASIVE PLANTS IN YARD WASTE! Place all invasive plants in a GARBAGE BAG and dispose of them at your local landfill. This will help to prevent the spread of unwanted, invasive plants. If you need help identifying a plant visit www.oiso.ca or email us with questions or ideas at oasiss@shaw.ca.

May be an image of text that says 'DON'T PUT INVASIVE PLANTS IN YARD WASTE!'
May be an image of tree, outdoors and text that says 'BAG A THEM ANDIPLACE THEM IN THE GARBAGE To prevent seed spread'
May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'THANKS FOR HELPING TO KEEP OUR SOIL INVASIVE FREE'

DID YOU KNOW? Native plants contribute to ecosystem stability and resilience! BC has had a rough year with extreme heat, forest fires and now severe flooding. There is no question that some of our actions are increasingly causing shifts in ecosystems to less desirable and degraded conditions. Invasive plant removal and replacement with native species whenever possible helps create sites that will recover faster from disturbance. BE PART OF THE SOLUTION!

May be an image of text that says 'DID you KNOW? Native plants increase ecosystem resilience!'
May be an image of tree, outdoors and text that says 'BLACK COTTONWOOD Roots stabilize river banks and help prevent flooding and erosion.'
May be an image of nature, mountain and text that says 'RABBITBRUSH Builds soil stability and structure and prevents invasive plants from establishing.'
May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'PARSNIP FLOWERED BUCKWHEAT A great slope stabilizer and is valuable to a huge variety of olnao'
May be an image of tree, outdoors and text that says 'PONDEROSA PINE Mature trees have a thick bark and a self-pruning habit that makes them fire resistant.'

DID YOU KNOW?Forests are home to about 80% of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity, with more that 60,000 tree species.Forests provide habitat for wildlife, offer watershed protection, prevent soil erosion and mitigate climate change.TAKE ACTION. Learn more about our local trees and how we can work together to protect our forests.

May be an image of tree, sky and text that says 'YOυ oU KNOW? DID PONDEROSA PINE Supports species that are found in no other habitat, including White-headed Woodpecker, Pygmy Nuthatch and Gray Flycatcher'
May be an image of tree and text that says 'PROTECT OUR FORESTS FROM INVASIVE SPECIES CONTROL invasive plants on your property STAY on roads to avoid soil disturbance and spread invasives REPORT any unusual insects or plants SUPPORT sustainable forest management'

STINK BUGS

Stink bugs are on the move at this time of year. Fortunately most don’t pose much of a problem. The exception: BROWN MARMORATED STINK BUG Get to know what it looks like and please REPORT any suspect bugs!! Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen

CHEATGRASS / SPEARGRASS

CHEATGRASS. Okanagan residents commonly refer to this invasive plant as “speargrass” due to its sharply pointed seeds. The seeds commonly penetrate socks and boot laces during the summer months or lodge themselves in the paws, ears or bellies of unwary dogs. Dogs can also inhale the seeds which can result in devastating internal damage. This very common grass has invaded most of the grasslands and low elevation forests in the Okanagan and Similkameen valleys. It changes colour from green to purplish-red to brown as the plant matures and eventually dries. Branches are slender, drooping and hairy. Because cheatgrass grows throughout fall and winter, by the time the rain stops in spring, cheatgrass seeds are already maturing. Unlike native bunchgrasses, cheatgrass then dies by the end of July, avoiding the hottest and driest part of summer. This gives it an advantage over native grasses. When dry, cheatgrass is extremely combustible and can represent a major fire hazard.

WHAT ACTION CAN YOU TAKE to deal with this invader? Minimizing soil disturbance and maintaining vigorous perennial plant communities can prevent new infestations. Hand pulling can be effective for small infestations, especially before the plants set seed. On larger infestations, hand pulling may be required for several years until the seed bank is depleted. Disturbed areas should be seeded to perennial grasses to provide competition.


MYRTLE SPURGEAKA Donkey tail
MYRTLE SPURGE 3

Now that its spring we want to MOTIVATE you to take action when it comes to invasive species.

WHY CARE?***Invasive species are the second biggest threat to biodiversity after habitat loss. ***Their impacts cost us billions of dollars every year $$$ ***Many invasive species pose health hazards to humans, wildlife, livestock and pets. THE GOOD NEWS: YOU are a big part of the solution! We hope that our new series #motivationmonday will encourage you to learn more about the invasive species found in your community and take action to prevent their spread. Today we will introduce you to a plant that got a lot of attention last year: MYRTLE SPURGEAKA Donkey tail, this invasive plant is flowering right now and it looks really attractive. But BEWARE, it contains a milky sap that can cause irritation, blotching, blisters and swelling in sensitive individuals. If it gets in your eyes, it can cause temporary blindness. Several children in the Penticton area were exposed to this plant last year. Myrtle spurge is a highly invasive plant that is popular in rock gardens. It is a low-growing perennial with trailing stems of fleshy blue-green alternate leaves. Flowers are inconspicuous, surrounded by yellow-green flower-like bracts that appear in early spring. If you have myrtle spurge on your property you should carefully remove it. Gloves, long sleeves and eye protection should be worn. Eyes should be never be rubbed until after hands are thoroughly washed. Small patches of all species should be carefully dug out, with removal of as much of the root system as possible. The area should be replaced with non-invasive desirable plants to prevent re-establishment of the spurge. Kinnickinick and stonecrop (sedum varieties) are great alternatives. Annual monitoring and re-treatment is imperative to ensure complete removal of the weed.



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DID YOU KNOW? Many invasive plants were introduced to Canada as ornamental plants. Some invasive plants ARE STILL FOR SALE!! They may be potted plants or in seed packets.Select non-invasive plants for your garden – KNOW WHAT YOU GROW! Use appropriate methods to prevent seed production and control the spread of invasive plants. STAY INFORMED AND TAKE ACTION. If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca


Antelope-brush

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ANTELOPE-BRUSH

Okanagan Similkameen Stewardship

Did you know that the gnarled, craggy Antelope-brush that is blooming down in the South Okanagan is part of one of the rarest and most endangered ecosystems in Canada? It is a vital part of our grassland ecosystems and provides important habitat for many of our Endangered and Threatened species-at-risk. The little Behr’s Hairstreak butterfly, for instance, will only lay their eggs on the leaves and branches of Antelope-brush!


The “Good Bug” for your gardens!

May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'A Single Radybug Can Consume 5,000 Aphids During Its Lifetime Ladybugs and Lacewings provide natural pest control. Keep them in your garden by providing a diverse and pesticide- environment with plenty of flowers & plant-based foods. No Ladybugs? Buy some at your garden center or order online. gmotrevn.ing ww.o'

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May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'BIOCONTROL HEROES ST. JOHN'S WORT BEETLE ADULTS EMERGE IN EARLY JUNE AND BEGIN FEEDING ON YOUNG LEAVES, FLOWER BUDS OR THE UNDERSIDE OF LEAVES'

The ST. JOHN’S-WORT BEETLE overwinters as eggs on basal leaves. Larvae feed on leaf buds and immature leaves causing complete defoliation before moving onto adjacent plants. The adults are a mesmerizing metallic bronze, green, blue, purple or black colour. Adults emerge in early June and begin feeding in clusters on young terminal leaves, flower buds or the underside of leaves. If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca


DID YOU KNOW?Native plants contribute to ecosystem stability and resilience! BC has had a rough year with extreme heat, forest fires and now severe flooding. There is no question that some of our actions are increasingly causing shifts in ecosystems to less desirable and degraded conditions. Invasive plant removal and replacement with native species whenever possible helps create sites that will recover faster from disturbance. BE PART OF THE SOLUTION! If you have any questions contact oasiss at oasiss@shaw.ca.


Typically, climate change and invasive species are listed side by each as direct drivers of nature loss. Both climate change and invasive species pose extraordinary ecological challenges to the world today. However, consideration of invasive species management in relation to climate change is extremely important. The spread of invasive species weakens ecosystems and makes them more vulnerable to the effects of climate change. By preventing the spread of invasive species, we also protect our natural environment from the effects of climate change. If you have any questions contact oasiss at oasiss@shaw.ca.


INVASIVE SQUIRRELS have some big ecological impacts. They deplete populations of native squirrels through competition and disease. They displace native birds of their nesting habitat, eat eggs and nestlings. They also compete with native mice and voles. Interestingly, the Eastern Grey Squirrel is ranked by the Invasive Species Specialist Group as one of the Top 100 Invasive Species in the world! If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca.


May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'BIOCONTROL HEROES PURPLE LOOSESTRIFE BEETLE THE LARVAE AND ADULTS FEED ON BUDS. THIS STUNTS PLANTS AND REDUCES SEED PRODUCTION IN HEAVY POPULATIONS PLANTS WILL BE DESTROYED.'

The PURPLE LOOSESTRIFE BEETLE is excited about spring. Overwintered adults appear in mid May into early June, and begin feeding on the plant buds and tender new growth. Over their life, females can lay between 300 and 400 eggs. Reduced flowering and seed production is common after several years attack. Delayed flowering by one month also reduces the number of flowers the plant can produce and later blooming limits pollination. Three cheers for biocontrol heroes! If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca

Photo: Lawrence Barringer, Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Bugwood.org
Canada is working to keep out the spotted lanternfly

Solid progress has been made targeting invasive species in the Okanagan, thanks to the staff at Okanagan and Similkameen Invasive Species Society (OASISS), though there are still some species of concern spreading throughout the valley.

Lisa Scott, the executive director for OASISS gave a summary of the organization’s work from 2021 during the Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen’s meeting on Thursday morning.

After 25 years on the job, Scott said they continue to battle the war on invasive species.

“We chemically treated a total of 25 hectares with a total of 964 treatments and we mechanically treated 278 sites covering a total of eight hectares,” she shared, adding they had 281 sites surveyed with no plants found.

“And just to be clear, if we find no plants at a site where we previously had invasive plants, we don’t just think our job is done and walk away. There is a formula depending on the invasive plant we’re targeting there.”

The team continues to focus efforts on a species of plants known to be deadly to horses if consumed, hoary alyssum. The plant continues to show up around farms and rural properties in Summerland and throughout the Okanagan, creeping into the Similkameen.

While OASISS does work with municipalities and the Ministry of Transportation to tackle the plant in public areas and along roadways, they also need private landowners to work with them.

“It doesn’t make any sense for us to continue to put public dollars on the road if we’re not encouraging reciprocal effort on private land. We don’t have any jurisdiction there. So it’s very strong encouragement, and incentives where we can assist private landowners in taking the required actions,” Scott explained.

Key areas of focus for the organization include tackling puncture vine and longspine sandbur throughout agricultural lands and organic farms.

They also continue to work with the Okanagan basin water board, trying to keep invasive mussels and invasive clams out of the water.

“We deal with emerging species as well. And from my perspective, the emerging species really all relate to insect pests,” Scott added.

Brown marmorated stink bugs have be found in the Similkameen and Okanagan Valley, with more reports seen spreading in downtown Kelowna spreading into orchards in the Mission Area.

“As far as control options, unfortunately they are limited at this time. So we’re just the messenger but the Ministry of Agriculture is working with the Federal Agricultural Department to look at the direction of where to go with this particular insect pest.”

According to the province, the stink bug is a very serious pest that feeds on more than 100 different plant species. In 2010, an estimated loss of $37 million due to brown marmorated stink bug feeding was reported by the apple industry in the Mid-Atlantic States.

Any reports should go to the Ministry of Agriculture or the Kelowna office, with a picture of the stink bug or a collected sample in a vial or bag. Find more information here.

A new species to put on your radar is the spotted lantern fly. While it hasn’t yet been reported in Canada, the invasive pest loves grapes and fruit trees. It has been added to the federal govenrment’s regulated pest list in 2018 in an effort to prevent the introduction from infested areas.

“This little guy has caused impacts of up to 90 per cent devastation in vineyards. We do not want it here,” Scott added.


May be an image of text that says 'BIOCONTROL HEROES TOADFLAX WEEVIL HIBERNATES DURING THE WINTER IN TOADFLAX STALKS AND IS READY TO GETTO GET TO WORK IN THE SPRING! TOADFLAX WEEVIL TOADFLAX STALK IN WINTER'

Some biocontrol agents (natural insect enemies) are getting prepared during the winter. These weevils are fast asleep in the stalks of DALMATIAN TOADFLAX, ready to wake up in the spring and eat this invasive plant. Three cheers for biocontrol heroes!This post is part of our #wisdomwednesday series, where we share facts and tips about invasive species. If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca


May be an image of outdoors and text that says 'BIOCONTROL HEROES KNAPWEED WEEVIL THE LARVAE HOLLOW OUT THE KNAPWEED ROOT CAUSING PLANTS TO BE SHORTENED, PRODUCE LESS FLOWERS AND SEEDS. ADULTS FEED ON LEAVES AND REDUCE PLANT VIGOUR'

Some biocontrol agents (natural insect enemies) are lying in wait during the winter. The KNAPWEED ROOT WEEVIL is resting inside the root crown, but will soon resume feeding. New adult weevils will chew through the root and crawl to the surface in the summer. These weevils result in shorter plants, fewer flowers and less seeds. Plants are also less vigorous. This weevil prefers hot and dry habitat, with loose, well drained soil. Three cheers for biocontrol heroes!This post is part of our #wisdomwednesday series, where we share facts and tips about invasive species. If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca


May be an image of nature and text that says 'BIOCONTROL HEROES CINNABAR MOTH THELARVAE ANDS TRAVEL TANSY RAGWORT 800 METRES TO IND'

The CINNABAR MOTH will emerge from pupation in late spring (May through June) and begin mating and egg-laying. Adults are attractive bright red and brown/black moths 15 to 22 mm long. This moth is particularly distinctive during its larval stage, when it is black with ringed orange-gold bands. The larvae have an insatiable appetite, feeding aggressively on flowers, leaves and stems of the invasive plant, TANSY RAGWORT. They will travel up to 800 m to find food! Three cheers for biocontrol heroes!!!This post is part of our #wisdomwednesday series, where we share facts and tips about invasive species. If you have any questions contact OASISS at oasiss@shaw.ca