Invasive English ivy slowly engulfs trees and prevents light from getting in. Its prevalence on the Saanich Peninsula and elsewhere in the region is prompting one local resident to plead for others to help remedy the problem. (Black Press Media file photo)

Invasive English ivy slowly engulfs trees and prevents light from getting in. Its prevalence on the Saanich Peninsula and elsewhere in the region is prompting one local resident to plead for others to help remedy the problem. (Black Press Media file photo)

LETTER: Ivy strangling the life out of local trees

There is a visible enemy attacking trees and native plants. It is an invasive scourge called ivy. It is slowly taking over our parks and yards. It spreads rapidly and is smothering plants on the ground and strangling trees. It effects the economy and human health.

Ivy takes over sensitive ecosystems, permanently upsetting the balance of plant, insect, bird and other animal life. Many homeowners and renters are aware of ivy thriving on their property, posts, fences, walls and trees. It weakens branches and prevents light from penetrating the leaves. It takes nutrients and water from the soil. It is a threat and many people are just letting it take over.

Please don’t let ivy kill and smother plants and trees in our community.

Cut its stems from their roots near the bottom of tree trunks. The top vines and leaves will die. This alone will help. If possible, pull out the roots, but it is a tough job, just ask volunteers with the Friends of North Saanich Parks, the Victoria Green Team and many individuals who do remove ivy, daphne and Himalayan blackberry and broom, all invasives.

Lynda Comber

Sidney

Environment