Our progress

This map of Fort Hill Park tracks the progress of our planting. With each event, the park volunteers focus on a new section of the park. We identify invasive plants and on the first day of the event, volunteers remove them, taking care to protect existing plants that are native to the area. The second day of the event is for planting in the same area with native specimens that are beneficial to the ecosystem within the park.

Click on the image (right) to see the progression of plantings over the years!

Below you will find the top two invasive pants we are working on removing from the park, along with our first featured native plant of Fort Hill Park!

Invasive: English Ivy

(Latin name: Hedera helix)

English ivy, a non-regulated Class C noxious weed. It is evergreen and perennial. It is capable of covering the ground as well as entire tree, taking all available light and nutrients.

Removal: A hook tool is used to cut the ivy on the ground into manageable sections that can be pulled from the ground. In trees, the ivy is cut near the ground and at shoulder level. By removing the middle piece, it is clear that the ivy has been cut. The vines higher up will dry up and fall to the ground naturally.

Invasive: Norway Maple Tree

(Latin name: Acer platinoid)

Grow leaves very early in spring, before native plants and keep their leaves until late in the fall beyond native plants. Norway Maples create an umbrella of darkness over other plants all summer, taking all available light and nutrients.

Removal: Full grown trees are too large to remove. A special gripping pry bar tool is used to rip out Norway Maple saplings up to 2 inches thick. We have removed over 200 saplings in this manner.

Featured Native Plant: Chokeberry

(Latin name: Aronia melanocarpa (black), Aronia arbutifolia (red) and Aronia prunifolia (purple)

164 Aronias have been planted in Fort Hill Park. They are native to eastern North America and most commonly found in wet woods and swamps. We have planted three varieties of chokeberries: black, red and purple. The summer heat and drought in 2022 was rough on them. Some have not survived.

The name “chokeberry” comes from the extremely sour flavor of the berries. In spite of this, the birds eat them all summer and into the fall and winter, if they don’t migrate south.