Welcome & News Blog
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.
Want to join the SSISC team?
We are currently hiring for multiple positions.
Please apply by emailing your cover letter and resume
(as one single PDF document) to
SSISC's Executive Director, Clare Greenberg firstname.lastname@example.org
by 5pm Friday April 8th, 2016.
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.
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Naturespeak: Dumping garden waste not as eco-friendly as you might think
Full article here
- 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?
Imagine a day dedicated to giving back … around the world, across Canada and in your own community! Just as Black Friday kicks off the holiday shopping season, GivingTuesday is the opening day of the giving season.
What is GivingTuesday?
GivingTuesday is a global day of giving. After the sales of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, GivingTuesday is a time to celebrate and encourage activities that support charities and non profits. Whether it’s making a donation, volunteering time, helping a neighbour or spreading the word, GivingTuesday is a movement for everyone who wants to give something back.
The Sea to Sky Invasive Species Council is a part of Sea to Sky Gives -our local civic movement for giving back to charities and non-profit societies in the Sea to Sky corridor. Visit the SSISC Giving Tuesday page to donate and help minimize the impacts of invasive species in the Sea to Sky, or share this post to spread the word!
The field crew working hard to remove Yellow Flag Iris, and invasive species which takes over wetlands, clogging waterways, and reducing native biodiversity. During summer 2015 the SSISC field crew removed all known patches from the Squamish estuary, the River of Golden Dreams, Alta and Green lakes, and many other wetlands throughout the sea to sky!
Invasive species impact the ecology of mountain parks. They can crowd out native plants, reduce biodiversity, degrade wildlife habitat, cause erosion, and impact water quality. Many of them are unpalatable for wildlife, and as they increase in numbers they push out native species that are food for the local herbivores. Invasive plant seeds and other fragments are easily spread by humans; on our feet, the wheels of our car, the hull of our boat, and the tires of our mountain bike, to name a few. There are many invasive species growing in the Diamond Head parking lot at the trailhead to Garibaldi Provincial Park. Yellow lamium, Common burdock, St. John's-Wort, and Oxeye daisy have all invaded the area. Removing these invasives will prevent them from spreading up the trails and into the alpine where sensitive wildflower ecosystems exist. You can help to reduce the impact of invasive species on our mountain parks by coming out to the Community Weed Pull Sunday September 20th 2:00-4:00pm. Everyone is welcome to come learn how to identify local invasives, and get some hands on experience removing them while helping to protect our park from invasion. Tools, refreshments, and snacks will be provided! Bring gardening gloves if you have them.
Location: Garibaldi Provincial Park - Diamond Head Parking Lot (this is the parking lot for the Red Heather meadows and Elfin lakes hike).
Directions: Follow Mamquam Road east from highway 99, and through an industrial area. Where the gravel road forks; turn left onto Garibaldi Park rd. It is 14.5km from highway 99 to the upper parking lot at 950m elevation where the weed pull will take place. The road is gravel and can easily be driven by 2 wheel drive vehicles.
See you there!