March 19, 2005 a group of volunteers from the Grosse Ile Nature and
Land Conservancy met at the BASF lots at the north end of Grosse Ile
(North of Bridge Road, West side of Meridian, between Annette and
Paulina) to remove an invasive species, Phragmites australis,
from the property.
Phragmites alter the structure
and function of diverse marsh ecosystems by changing species composition,
nutrient cycles and water flow. Dense Phragmites stands decrease native
biodiversity and the quality of wetland habitat, particularly for
migrating waders and waterfowl species. The plants can grow to over
twelve feet tall and spread by seeds or rhizomes. The rhisomes can
be more than twenty feet in length.
The tops of the phragmites
were cut off and bagged. The stalks were cut and left on the ground.
When the stalks have regrown to about one foot, the stalks will be
cut again. In September the stalks will be treated with a herbicide.