North Cornwall Balsam Bonanza

This Saturday and Sunday North Cornwall rangers and volunteers got together to help get rid of the invasive weed, Himalayan balsam. We concentrated our efforts in Rocky Valley, Tintagel and Valency Valley in Boscastle.
Himalayan balsam is an invasive, non-native plant and was brought here by the Victorians for their gardens. Since then it has escaped the gardens and now enjoys clogging up our river systems and countryside. It is well suited to our climate and grows very fast, out-competing our native plants. Later in the summer it produces pretty pink flowers which are full of nectar, the bees love it so much that they prefer to pollinate balsam over our native plants.
Kate pulling Himalayan balsam in Rocky Valley
However, all is not lost!! With help from our dedicated volunteers and Cornwall College Newquay, we are putting up a fight against this weed. We managed to pull up thousands of plants over the weekend, making a huge dent in the numbers of balsam plants growing in North Cornwall. In the last two years we have seen a definite decrease in the number of plants establishing, and we hope over the coming years we may be able to get rid of it completely in some areas.

can you spot the balsam basher?

can you spot the balsam basher?

If you would like to help us in our fight to eradicate Himalyan balsam, please look for dates on the volunteering pages.

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