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Welcome & News Blog

Welcome to the Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council, a non-profit society that works to minimize the negative impacts caused by invasive species on the south coast of British Columbia, Canada, in cooperation with organizations, First Nations, governments and industry.

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May is Invasive Species Action Month in BC, and it is a great time to get to know our local invasive plants a little better. It is as easy as playing "I Spy" as you drive up and down the highway. Many invasives are super obvious as they flower throughout the season, and easy to spot in particular areas. To learn more, check out these I Spy hints in the Whistler Question:

Week #1: Yellow Lamium

Week #2: Japanese Knotweed

Week #3: Scotch Broom

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For more information visit The Yellow Flag Iris Patrol Page

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Breanne Johnson - Tue Apr 19, 2016 @ 05:42PM
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Want to know what we've been up to all year? Take a look at our 2015 Annual Report. It is a condensed, easy to read version of all our programs and projects. We'll be talking about all of this at our Spring Meeting and AGM April 20th 10am-12pm at the Pemberton Community Centre. Everyone is welcome and it is a great way to find out how you can help! We also have a guest speaker from SFU who will be sharing his knowledge of invasive Bull Frogs with us. See the spring meeting agenda here.

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Executive Director - Wed Mar 30, 2016 @ 11:18AM
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Want to join the SSISC team?

We are currently hiring for multiple positions.

Invasive Species Crew Member

Invasive Species Crew Member (Student)

Admin & Programs Assistant

Please apply by emailing your cover letter and resume
(as one single PDF document) to
SSISC's Executive Director, Clare Greenberg ssinvasives@gmail.com
by 5pm Friday April 8th, 2016.

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Executive Director - Wed Mar 16, 2016 @ 11:38AM
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Draft agenda available here  

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Breanne Johnson - Wed Nov 04, 2015 @ 02:38PM
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Our Fall newsletter was just sent out and is full of some great resources, articles, upcoming events, photos and thank you's to our field staff and funders. You can view it here

To receive newsletters right to your inbox, subscribe to our news mailing list on our homepage (to your right >>>>>)

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Breanne Johnson - Tue Nov 03, 2015 @ 04:14PM
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Further information about the Yellow Flag Iris Patrol program here

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Breanne Johnson - Tue Nov 03, 2015 @ 04:02PM
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Breanne Johnson - Mon Oct 19, 2015 @ 01:55PM
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Naturespeak: Dumping garden waste not as eco-friendly as you might think

By Breanne Johnson

Full article here

PHOTO SUBMITTED - yellow lamium Yellow Lamium is highly invasive and small fragments easily take root when dumped into a nearby forest or over the side of a dike.
  • YELLOW LAMIUM Yellow Lamium is highly invasive and small fragments easily take root when dumped into a nearby forest or over the side of a dike.

It's that time of year again, and many of you with a green thumb will be looking for somewhere to dispose of your garden green waste.

I can dump my garden clippings and lawn trimmings over my back fence, right? Aren't I just feeding it back into the ecosystem where it will decompose and turn into dirt? And aren't I being extra green reducing my carbon footprint by saving a trip to the dump?


Unfortunately, disposing of garden waste over the fence or into the nearby forest, is one of the main ways that invasive plants are dispersed and spread, creating a heap of problems bigger than the waste you tossed.

Many of the pretty plants growing in your yard are non-native, exotic species planted for landscaping purposes.

Plants in gardens and yards are often chosen for their resilience to environmental conditions, fast growth, or ability to climb up fences or cover large areas of exposed ground.

The characteristics that make them attractive to gardeners are also what allow them to invade and negatively impact our natural ecosystems.

Japanese Knotweed is a fast growing plant that aggressively invades ecosystems by shading and outcompeting native species. It causes erosion and damages foundations and infrastructure with its aggressive root system. Knotweed is found throughout Squamish residential areas, and is able to sprout from a tiny piece of stem or root the size of your fingernail.

Tossing a bag of garden waste containing even the smallest of fragments can cause a new infestation.

Yellow Lamium is found in many planters and hanging baskets. It spreads by runner and rhizome, and plant clippings easily take root when dumped onto the ground.

Many trails and parks behind residential areas in the Sea to Sky have been taken over by Lamium, which creeps across the forest floor, smothering the native plant understory.

Highly tolerant of shade, its growth knows no limit.

The Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council field crews and volunteers work hard all summer removing invasive plants like Lamium and Knotweed that are causing problems just beyond our backyards. Many of these infestations originated from a mound of old garden waste.

Not only is the dumping of garden waste environmentally damaging, it is also illegal. Bylaws in Squamish, Whistler, and Pemberton all prohibit the action and are enforceable with fines.

So, what should I do with my garden waste?

  • Go to ssisc.info to learn which plants in your garden are invasive;
  • Sort your garden waste, placing the invasive plant material into a sealed garbage bag, to prevent any seeds or plant fragments from escaping during transport;
  • Take the waste to your local transfer station. Any invasive plant material should be placed in the dedicated invasive species bins at the Squamish landfill and Callaghan transfer station, whilst general yard waste can go in the organics bin. A bit of effort goes a long way to help stop the spread!
  • Whistler's free fall waste drop off is from Oct. 16 to 18 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Property owners can drop off their yard waste for free in an area adjacent to the Nesters Waste Depot.
  • Garden debris burning is Oct. 15 to 30. Homeowners must obtain a fire permit in person at municipal hall.
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