Invasive plants posing a problem in Fruitvale

Central Kootenay Invasive Plant Committee’s Jennifer Vogel gave a presentation to advise council of invasive plant species within the area.

Fruitvale has been invaded – by plants.

On Monday night in Fruitvale’s regular council meeting, the Central Kootenay Invasive Plant Committee’s spokesperson Jennifer Vogel gave an annual presentation to advise council of invasive plant species within the area.

Fruitvale has a few areas that have invasive plants, including a small area on the north-side hill on Highway 3B, close to the west entrance of the village, where Scotch broom has started to take a foothold.

Although it is unclear what action council will take at this moment, the village was eager to stay in the loop. In the interim, councillors have been urged to review additional information about relevant bylaws pertaining to invasive plants.

“They do some work for the regional district and keep us in the loop as to their activities and possible expansion of the invasive species in our area,” concluded chief administrative officer Lila Cresswell Tuesday morning.

In addition, the Fruitvale Creek bed at First Street has Himalayan balsam (also known as Policeman’s Helmet) and Japanese Knotweed in various locations along the highway shoulders and along Beaver Creek.

Japanese knotweed has been dubbed as toxic waste in the United Kingdom, and Vogel said there is some concern about it in Canada. It has the ability to grow through tarmac and pipes, and for some it even impacts mortgage applications.

“It’s really hard to kill,” Vogel explained. “You have to inject the treatment into the plants to kill plants near infrastructure.”