Weed Warriors are volunteers who work independently on designated properties to manually remove invasive plants. This is a great opportunity for volunteers with an aptitude for plant identification and a willingness to work independently and on your own schedule.
All Weed Warriors must
- Attend a Weed Warrior training session on invasive plant identification (including common look-a-likes) and on when to use specific removal treatments.
- Demonstrate an ability to identify the target invasive plants and an understanding of the desired removal techniques.
- Receive certification from the host CISMA partner to remove invasive plants from their properties.
Once certified, Weed Warriors can go out on their own time to any of the designated locations to manage the invasive plants present. Certified Weed Warriors are allowed to supervise their family unit or a friend (social distanced of course) to assist tackling the invasive plants.
Weed Warriors are expected to visit properties at least 2 times per month during the growing season (April to mid-October) with each visit being a minimum of 30 minutes. For each visit the Weed Warrior must submit a brief report of their time and actions. Warriors can choose a single property to focus on or go to several throughout the season.
Anyone interested should have basic experience with plant identification and be comfortable working in the woods without staff present.
The plants we will focus on are Massachusetts’ worst offenders: Japanese barberry, multiflora rose, oriental bittersweet, glossy/common buckthorn, honeysuckle, winged euonymus, and garlic mustard.
How to Become a Host Organization
CISMA is working to expand this program throughout the region with numerous host organizations. Any organization can host Weed Warrior trainings and certify volunteers. To ensure a similar standard of volunteer skill across organizations we have establish some protocols that all host organization will need to follow. For more information on the protocols please review the Host Organization Guidelines below.
Volunteer Tracking Activity Form– A shared report for you to track volunteer time
Raising the Bar on Stewardship Volunteerism– Why we should all post events to Nature Groupie to increase volunteerism throughout our region.
Interested? Contact Kristin O’Brien (firstname.lastname@example.org) to learn more.
Quick Links to Additional Resources: Documents and Videos
You can find more information about individual species on under the invasives tab and throughout the CISMA website.
These two documents will help you learn how to identify invasive species in our natural areas:
To learn more about the invasive species that are our highest priorities for removal, watch a series of videos from Sudbury Valley Trustees and the Outsmart Project (approved by UMass Amherst) that explain how to identify them.