Overgrowth of invasive knotweed on Silver Street Bridge in Lower Annable is obstructing sight lines to traffic. (Joe Guercio photos)

Overgrowth of invasive knotweed on Silver Street Bridge in Lower Annable is obstructing sight lines to traffic. (Joe Guercio photos)

Invasive plants wreaking havoc on Annable bridge and Trail Creek

The Village of Warfield is developing a plan for dealing with invasive vegetation

Asking to have thick scrub removed from the Silver Street Bridge in Annable is an effort that’s been playing on loop for years, says homeowner Joe Guercio.

“Every year in the spring and early summer I find the brush and trees along the creek, which over grow and block the vision of the entrance to Silver Street,” he told the Times.

In particular, Guercio says the heavy vegetation is causing traffic problems because sight lines are obstructed along Wellington Avenue, which leads to Highway 3B.

Even though he is a seasoned gardener, Guercio can’t take the matter into his own hands because, of course, this is not his property.

And every year he contacts the village to cut it down.

But it’s not that easy, and here’s why.

The thick overgrowth is along a body of water, that being Trail Creek, so the municipality can’t just take a weed-whacker to it.

Guercio says he’s been told the vines and leaves can’t be chopped down because the respective provincial ministry has ruled that vegetation removal could disrupt fish/amphibious life.

So, what is he to do about this ongoing traffic safety issue?

That’s where the invasive species program might come into play as an eventual resolution to his long-standing problem.

Earlier this year, Warfield netted a $14,000 grant from Columbia Basin Trust to start identifying, taking inventory, and developing a removal plan for invasive plant species growing in the village proper.

And, the vegetation on Silver Creek Bridge does appear to be invasive.

“The lantern material on the barriers appears to be Virginia Creeper,” Lila Cresswell, Warfield’s chief administrative officer said.

“Although it is invasive, it is not a worrisome one, more of an annoyance and will lose its leaves very shortly. It doesn’t appear to be a sight line problem. Any tree branches in sight lines will be dealt with by public works staff during the regular autumn boulevard pruning work,” she continued.

“The other one is Japanese knotweed. And it is in the creek bed which makes removal difficult, both because of the creek restrictions and the destruction requirements for the removed plant material.”

The village contracted the Central Kootenay Invasive Species Society (CKISS) to complete an inventory and plan for invasive plants with financial assistance from the Trust grant.

The field work was done over the past several months and the report is expected to be ready for review by December.

“This stand of knotweed was noted in the inventory,” Cresswell confirmed.

“CKISS provided us a contact who does control work with creek edge knotweed and we are currently awaiting a proposal/costing for a pilot project for that area of Trail Creek.”

Cresswell pointed out that invasive plants like knotweed have taken over several West Kootenay communities, which have all committed funding toward ongoing control and education.

“CKISS has some scary info on knotweed,” she said. “And how damaging it is to creek environments and how difficult it is to remove and/or control.”

Knotweed was initially introduced to B.C. for ornamental use, especially for privacy purposes as it grows rapidly and forms dense patches. The plant reproduces through fragmentation, so when small pieces of the plant are moved by mowers, equipment or other vectors it can allow the plant to spread.

The consequences of invasion include disturbances in wetlands, riparian areas and streambanks, causing negative impacts on fish habitat and salmonids.

CKISS advises that chemical control is the only viable treatment option for large infestations, as digging, cutting or mowing knotweed can stimulate an increased spread.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter



View of Annable circa 1952. (Photo courtesy Joe Guercio)

View of Annable circa 1952. (Photo courtesy Joe Guercio)

Just Posted

Students at Creston Valley Secondary School put together an art installation of a replica residential school room. (Photo by Kelsey Yates)
Creston students create art installation of residential school room

The replica was decorated with a small bed, school uniform, and notes written with pleas for help

A living wage sets a higher standard than the minimum wage; it is what a family needs to earn to provide the basic needs based on the actual costs of living in a community.
Fruitvale now a living wage employer

“I’m really excited that Fruitvale is leading the charge for municipalities locally,” Morissette said.

Nelson police say a man attacked two people downtown with bear spray on Wednesday afternoon. File photo
Two people attacked with bear spray in downtown Nelson: police

Police say the three people know each other

Rotary eClub of Waneta Sunshine, alongside members from the Kootenay Native Plant Society and Trail Wildlife Association, joined together for a day of planting at Fort Shepherd. The Waneta Sunshine eClub was granted funds through an Express Grant from District 5080 to plant 50 shrubs which support pollinator opportunities at Fort Shepherd. Photos: Submitted
Kootenay conservation partners plant pollinator ‘superfoods’ at Fort Shepherd

TLC welcomes community groups to Fort Shepherd who would like to help local ecosystems thrive

Harold and Sadie Holoboff are bringing great food and service to the Eagle’s Nest Restaurant at Champion Lakes Golf and Country Club. Photo: Jim Bailey
West Kootenay golf course welcomes father-daughter team to restaurant

Chef Harold Holoboff brings comfort food to another level at Champion Lakes Eagle’s Nest Restaurant

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

B.C. Premier John Horgan leaves his office for a news conference in the legislature rose garden, June 3, 2020. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. premier roasted for office budget, taxing COVID-19 benefits

Youth addiction law that triggered election hasn’t appeared

A vial containing the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is shown at a vaccination site in Marcq en Baroeul, outside Lille, northern France, Saturday, March 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Michel Spingler
mRNA vaccines ‘preferred’ for all Canadians, including as 2nd dose after AstraZeneca: NACI

New recommendations prioritizes Pfizer, Moderna in almost all cases

Most Read