Thursday, December 05, 2002

Ice Ice, Baby

Last weekend a dozen volunteers converged on populations of the South African ice plant (Carpobrotus edulis) located on a beach in Santa Cruz County, California. As reported in the Santa Cruz Sentinel, the goal was to remove the invasive species from sand dunes and hopefully allow the native plant populations there a chance to recover. There is some controversy about this project that stems from the very reason ice plants were introduced in the first place: they are very effective at dune stabilization. With the ice plants removed, it is likely that the dunes will revert to a natural state, which means they'll be moving around. This may cause problems for those charged with maintaining the beaches, which are park of the state park system. Here's a story about a similar project in Marin County.

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