Without natural pests and predators, some non-native species can
grow and spread rapidly in our islands' warm climate. These
species can invade the natural ecosystems on your property.
They outcompete native plants for nutrients and water, sometimes
changing the vegetative make-up of your land. We're even
learning now that some invasive species can actually devalue your
What you can do
Garden with native species
Gardeners have long imported plants to different regions.
Even with the best intentions of confining plants to gardens, some
of these plants have a knack at escaping, climbing fences,
burrowing under paths and sending seeds out on the winds to find a
new space to grow.
Plants like English ivy, periwinkle and Lamiastrum have a shady
history of sneaking from well-manicured gardens into our islands'
environments, destroying the wild beauty we've come to love.
Before you plant a new species in your garden, think about the
effects that plant might have on the native plants outside your
garden. Native plants are a beautiful gardening supplement to
ornamental species, often helping reduce your water use and garden
Stop the spread of invasive plants on your property
You can unknowingly carry invasive plant seeds and roots onto
your property in gardening soil and fill, vehicle tires, shoes and
pet paws. The most likely places you'll find invasive plant
infestations starting on your land are roadsides, trails and
utility corridors. Keep a close eye on these areas and stop
infestations before they start.
You can give native species a helping hand by pulling or cutting
invasive species on your land. Be careful to research best
practices for the particular species you're dealing with; some
species are poisonous to humans and some need special care when
handling to avoid encouraging their spread. The Invasive
Plant Council of BC or your local conservancy can give you great
tips on how to tackle a particular species on your property.
Here are a few of the most common tips:
- Wear protective clothing and gloves
- Take action in late fall to early January to avoid trampling
sensitive native species
- Focus first on isolated patches to prevent further
spreading. Then work on larger patches starting at the
outside and working in to contain further infestations
- Avoid composting pulled or cut invasive species. Check
with your regional district for information on how residents can
dispose of invasive plant material
Common invasive species to watch for on your island property
For more information and helpful tips
Our staff is happy to help you learn more about invasive species
on your land, and how you can help native species regain their
footing in island ecosystems. Contact us
The following organizations and programs provide more detailed
information about invasive species to watch for, and steps to
removing them from your land.