Students gathered at a saltmarsh site in Massachusetts, taking a break from their regular school day routine to remove invasive perennial pepperweed plants from among the bushes and marsh grasses.
Originally from West Asia and Europe, the leafy pepperweed can grow 2-5 feet tall, blooming with small, white, four-petaled flowers. Unfortunately, left alone the pepperweed can dominate the marsh edges, moving to new locations on the tide to both wetlands and agricultural lands. By changing the soil conditions, pepperweed is adept at replacing native plants that provide critical wildlife habitat and forage. The students, led by Liz Duff, Education Coordinator at Mass Audubon, combat this invasive species by pulling the stems by hand.
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