Duncan encourages action to manage phragmites along Perth County roadways

·2 min read

PERTH COUNTY – On May 6, Coun. Matt Duncan encouraged Perth County council to support an initiative by the Township of The Archipelago to take action managing invasive phragmites along roadways.

“Phragmites is starting to become a bigger problem throughout Ontario,” he said. “A lot of it is moved through the construction industry with unclean equipment. Even in Perth County, there is starting to be numerous patches showing up on our roadsides.”

He suggested the need to create a plan to deal with phragmites because it’s an extremely fast-moving, invasive species.

“I think now is the time before it gets a foothold here as it has in other areas of the province,” said Duncan.

“It’s an issue in West Perth,” said Coun. Walter McKenzie. “We hired a company to spray… but it’s also through the county and on the provincial highways so I think we need to support this and take action on it.”

Coun. Daryl Herlick asked Duncan for a little more information about phragmites because he said he was a little hesitant.

“It takes right over and chokes (out) any native plant that’s in the area and completely take over the ecosystem,” said Duncan. “There are other areas in the province where they have got huge problems with it now and it’s become very costly to try to manage, particularly when it gets into a wetland because there is only a limited number of companies that can spray over water to control it.”

“I know we’ve got it starting in Perth South too… along the waterways,” said Warden James Aitcheson. “It’s way worse to the west of us I know that but if it’s there it’s coming here and it already is here.”

He suggested sending a letter of support for The Archipelago and referring it to the Perth County weed inspector, Marvin Smith, to deal with.

Duncan agreed to that motion.

The motion was carried unanimously.

Colin Burrowes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Listowel Banner

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