1983, isn’t fighting against zombies or aliens, but against invasive plants.
She recruited community members, Boy Scouts of America scouts, and Girl Scouts to help in the battle against invasive species like Japanese barberry, wineberry, multiflora rosa, Japanese stiltgrass, and pachysandra. These plants are originally from another part of the world, and they grow aggressively here, pushing native plants, like the Virginia creeper, ferns, dogwood, and spicebush, out of the habitat. This has serious negative effects on the native wildlife, soil composition, water, and air quality, which can destabilize the entire ecosystem.
With the help of Sara Holtz, a lead volunteer with the Fairfax County Park Authority Invasive Management Area program, Kannan planned an event to remove these invasive plants for her Eagle Project. She created a presentation with examples of invasive plants in Fairfax County. She had displays at the Herndon, Oak Marr, and Reston Farmers markets and Oakton Day community event to share this information with the public and recruit volunteers from the community.
On Saturday, Aug. 21, nearly 30 volunteers removed invasive plants from Difficult Run Stream Valley Park in Oakton, filling an entire FCPA Dumpster with invasive bushes and vines.
Want to help fight against the invasion? Clear your backyard and neighborhood of invasive plants, choose to buy only native plant species from plant nurseries, and check out the Invasive Management Area and Volunteer Fairfax websites for future volunteer opportunities.
Oakton community volunteers.