DECATUR, Ill. – Several non-native species of honeysuckle are an invasive threat to native biodiversity. With leaves that appear before and drop after many other flowers and trees, bush honeysuckle will block sunlight so that other native species can’t grow. This also makes it easy to identify for control efforts. University of Illinois Extension, in collaboration with Decatur Park District and Community Environmental Council, are hosting a removal day for volunteers to clear honeysuckle from Fairview Park.

“Bush honeysuckle refers to multiple shrub-like honeysuckle species that will establish quickly with seed spread by birds,” says Extension Horticulture Educator Sarah Vogel. “Though these plants were once touted for landscape use, we are now seeing dense thickets out-compete native species in our forested areas.”

Honeysuckle Sweep will be from 9 to 11 a.m. on November 7 at Fairview Park, 2095 West Eldorado St., Decatur, Ill. In case of rain, the event will be on November 14 at the same time and location. Register by November 3 at go.illinois.edu/honeysuckle. Meet in the pool parking lot. Please bring your own gloves, loppers, and pruners. For more information, please contact Sarah Vogel, Extension horticulture educator, at sarahv@illinois.edu or call 217-877-6042.

The horticulture program is a branch of University of Illinois Extension that provides research-based information and training about soil testing, tree health, lawn care, pest identification and control, vegetable gardening, and more. The horticulture program also provides Master Gardener training. Find DeWitt, Macon, and Piatt Extension Master Gardeners and Horticulture on Facebook.

University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment. If you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this program, please contact 217-877-6042. Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time for meeting your access needs.

Source: Sarah Vogel, Extension Horticulture Educator, University of Illinois Extension

Writer: Laura Crider, Marketing and Communications, University of Illinois Extension

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.