The Connecticut Invasive Plant Working Group (CIPWG) 2016 Invasive Plant Symposium was held on Tuesday, October 11, 2016 at the Student Union, University of Connecticut in Storrs, CT. The theme of the symposium was: Invasive Plants in Our Changing World: Learn from the Past, Prepare for the Future.The 8th biennial conference featured national, regional, and local experts as well as citizen volunteers sharing practical solutions for invasive plant management and actions needed to promote native species and improve wildlife habitat. Nationally-recognized Keynote speaker, Jil Swearingen, co-author of Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas presented, “We’re Moving on Up: Invasive Plants Heading North”. Karl Wagener, Executive Director of the Connecticut Council on Environmental Quality, spoke on “Connecticut’s Future: Rooted in Choice”. William Hyatt, Vice Chair of the Connecticut Invasive Plants Council, provided a legislative update. Charlotte Pyle, recently retired from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service delivered closing remarks.
Concurrent afternoon sessions included:
What Are Other States Doing? Panel discussion with New England invasive plant experts
Native Plants for our Pollinators – Creating a balanced and healthy pollinator environment
Management of Key Invasives: Success Stories and Progress Reports
Biological Control: No Animal Too Small – Valuable invasive plant management tools
Aquatic Invasive Plants – Updates on Hydrilla and other new aquatic invasive plant threats
Plants to Watch Out For – The new invasives that threaten our borders
Research and management posters, an invasive plant identification area, and other educational exhibits were featured throughout the day.
“Celebrating Connecticut’s Landscape”: Fall Foliage Tour was held on Sunday October 2, 2016. The tour began at Sessions Woods Wildlife Management Area in Burlington, CT. Participants learned about Connecticut’s native plants, habitats, and invasive plant management. Tour leaders were: DEEP Wildlife Biologist Peter Picone, UConn Forester Tom Worthley, Dr. Jeff Ward CAES , Charlotte Pyle, Ecologist, David Irvin, CTDEEP Forester, Bill Moorhead , Botanist, and Jason Marshall (Conservationist/Sportsman).
It is with great sadness that we inform you of the passing of Penni Sharp on Sunday, December 14, 2014.
Penni was an excellent botanist and wetland biologist. She was very active in numerous organizations, including the Connecticut Invasive Plant Working Group, where she served as Co-chair for many years, the Connecticut Botanical Society, and the Connecticut Association of Wetland Scientists. It was truly an honor and a privilege to have known Penni as both a colleague and a friend. She inspired so many of us with her passion for protecting the environment, and she will be dearly missed.
Oriental or Asiatic Bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus) is a highly invasive, non-native vine that grows vigorously, damaging trees and other plants and forming dense stands. Bittersweet produces an abundance of bright fruits, which are spread by birds and other animals to new locations.
The sale of Oriental bittersweet has been prohibited in Connecticut since 2004. The law also prohibits the importation, purchase, and cultivation of bittersweet and other listed plants. Fines for violations of the law are listed at $50 per plant. The law includes all reproductive portions of the plant, including seeds.