Town of Stow's Captain Sargent Conservation Area

Name:  Jacquie Goring

Organization: Stow Conservation Commission

Phone Number: (978) 897-8615

Where is the site located?: Tuttle Lane, Stow; 42 26' 52" 71 28' 50"

Property Overview: Captain Sargent Conservation Area is a diverse property with wooded portions mixed with active agricultural lands and community gardens.

Management Site Description: Edge of actively farmed fields into forest.

How many acres are in the management area: 154.5 (total of property)

Is it listed on EDDMapS?: No

Habitat Type: Field/forest edge, Forest

Initial Invasive Distribution Description: There were dense patches of knotweed along either side of Tuttle lane and along the roadside. Bittersweet also bordered the field edge and was dispersed throughout the forest. Buckthorn and barberry were throughout the forest.

Distribution of knotweed ranged from 50-100%, barberry from 5-50%, bittersweet from 20-60%, and buckthorn 10-70%.

What this Early Detection Rapid Response (EDRR)?: No

What were the target species? Glossy Buckthorn (Frangula alnus), Japanese Barberry (Berberis thunbergii), Japanese Knotweed (Fallopia japonica), Oriental Bittersweet (Celastrus oribiculatus)

What was the initial percent cover of invasives?: 51-75%

What were the management objectives?: Eradication of knotweed and monitoring for reoccurance

What was the approximate project start date?: 07/01/2015

Project Summary:

This project is a portion of a CPA funded project to treat Japanese knotweed, glossy buckthorn, bittersweet, and Japanese barberry at Captain Sargent which was surveyed and mapped for invasives in 2014. Other properties mapped for invasives as a part of this project are Flagg Hill, Town Forest, Heath Hen and Marble Hill conservation areas.

Invasive control was predominately chemical, with some mechanical management.

 

Control Method: Chemical, Mechanical clearing along road with use of a flail mower borrowed from the highwy department in Fall of 2016

Disposal Method: Incineration

Detailed Project Timeline:

Before the project commenced, outreach was done through town meeting, the press, Garden Club Outreach, and meetings with the Cons Com.

Mapping and treatment were carried out by a contractor, Polatin Ecological Services (now Land Stewardship, Inc.)

Chemical treatment via foliar spray, cut and dab, and stem injection in the fall. With knotweed, this was followed by cutting and burning treated stalks. Treatment for knotweed has been completed in the fall of 2015 and 2016 and will be completed again for the final time in the fall of 2017. Treatment of buckthorn, bittersweet, and barberry commenced in 2016. Annual monitoring of the treatment area will be conducted to monitor potential re-occurrence.

For chemical treatment, triclopyr (aka Garlon) and Rodeo were used depending on location and species.

 

Was there a restoration component?: Yes

Restoration summary (if applicable): Currently seeing if the native seed bank establishes itself. After two years of treatment of the knotweed, the area is growing in with native weeds. We will likely plant a mix of native shrubs i.e. blueberry and winterberry to prevent other invasives from taking over.

Funding Sources: CPA funds

Final Acres in Management Area: 154.5

Percent Cover Invasives Year 1: 6-25%

Percent Cover Invasives Year 2: 0-5%

Percent Cover Invasives Year 3: N/A

Percent Cover Invasives Year 5: N/A

Percent Cover Invasives Year 10: N/A

Final Invasive Distribution Pattern: Knotweed has been almost completely erradicated. It is too early to assess treatment effectiveness on barberry, buckthorn, and bittersweet.

Any comments or takeaways?

Japanese knotweed treatment has thus far been very successful with very good results after the first year of treatment. The patch will be monitored during the growing season of 2017 and treated for a final time in the fall of 2017.

Although this project has been a huge undertaking, we have seen good success and have experienced strong public support.

Is your site open to the public?: Yes

Are you able to provide a tour?: Yes