Proposals for Addressing Exotic Invasive Species: The Middle Patuxent Environmental Area and Surrounds


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This report describes efforts undertaken by students as part of LARC 452 Green Infrastructure and Community Greening, Fall 2015. The course is divided into three sections. Section one focuses on land preservation principles and programs in the State of Maryland. Section two focuses on greening standards in the site development process including the implementation of the Maryland Forest Conservation Act and the District’s Green Area Ratio. Section three focuses on green interventions related to stormwater efforts and the implementation of Maryland ESD requirements. This research served as the project for the primarily lecture- based course. This research served two purposes for the overall course. First, it provided students with the opportunity to review and propose solutions to practical, real world invasive species issues. Secondly, the two field trips allowed students, particularly those with minimal vegetation or plant science background, real field experiences and the opportunity to learn from Howard County staff and other students. This was a valuable experience. The overall document provides three primary outcomes. The results of the field days provided data from sampling of 20 permanent vegetation plots in the northern section of Northern Conservation Area. The Northern Conservation Area has approximately 34 plots. Invasive species occurred in 100% of the 20 plots. The most prevalent species were Lonicera japonica, Microstegium vimineum, and Rosa multiflora. The second outcome is a series of proposals for addressing invasive species. The proposals draw on the adjacent land uses—schools, golf course and residential. The third outcome is a compilation of reference annotations that were investigated to support the development of the proposals. In the discussion of invasive species, students gained an acute and tangible understanding of the problem of invasive species and the challenges of addressing this widespread problem. The proposals reflect a consensus that public-private partnerships supported by both public and private leadership are needed to address the quality of forest environments and a difficult problem such as invasive species.

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