Clearing Himalayan Balsam

Two dates in July to help rid the Hreod Burna of this invasive species… see below or in our events section for more details.

Last year we did some clearance work along the section of the Hreod Burna that runs through HBUF to remove the Himalayan Balsam. It’s an invasive species that has taken up space usually occupied by native plants along the bank of the burna.

The Wiltshire Wildlife Trust undertook similar clearance work along other parts of the brook.

Himalayan Balsam

Himalayan Balsam

Himalayan balsam was introduced as a garden plant in 1839, but soon escaped and became widely naturalised along riverbanks and ditches, especially close to towns. It is fast-growing and spreads quickly, invading wet habitat at the expense of other, native flowers. Its explosive seed pods aid its spread by sending the seeds into the river, causing further dispersal downstream.

Volunteers working with the Trust have recently started to survey Himalayan Balsam along the length of the Hreod Burna Corridor and have confirmed that the work they undertook last year has resulted in a reduction in Balsam. We’ve been out to some of the areas we cleared last year and there is a lot less now than there was back then.

Their survey also indicates that it may be possible to really make a difference along the corridor, and they are hoping to join forces to make sure it is removed along the entire length of the Burna.

HBUF will be organising two sessions where we hope to be joined by other volunteers working with the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust to clear the Balsam from our section of the Burna.

Our events section has details of sessions on Sunday 17th July and Saturday 30th July. If you prefer you can checkout our Facebook page where we’ll also publish details of both events.

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Clearing Himalayan Balsam