Weed Wrangle: A Template for Engaging Local Communities through Citywide Invasive Plant Events



Speaker and Bio:

Steven Manning, President, Invasive Plant Control, Inc.

Steven Manning has spent the past 24 years working on invasive species.  He is the current President of the Pacific Northwest Invasive Plant Council, Vice President of the Mid Atlantic Invasive Plant Council, co-chair of the National Military Fish and Wildlife Association’s Invasive Species Working Group and serves on the board of the North Carolina Invasive Plant Council.  He is also the founder and President of Invasive Plant Control, Inc. (IPC) www.invasiveplantcontrol.comIPC was created to extend internationally its dedication to the control of invasive species utilizing a revised Integrated Pest Management approach and has successfully controlled hundreds of invasive species for a wide variety of land managers including federal, state, municipal and private landowners throughout the world.  Mr. Manning also designs and implements multiple training courses and workshops worldwide with topics ranging from “Invasive Species in Ports of Entry” to “On the Ground Control Techniques.”   IPC invests heavily in educational and awareness activities annually and is also heavily involved with local, state and international industry development projects including Volunteer Based Early Detection Networks.  In 2012, IPC introduced a suite of software and web based tools dedicated to environmental needs.  He is also a co-author on the publication; Miller, J.H.: Manning, S.; Enloe, S.F.  2010  “A field guide for the management of invasive plants in southern forests”  published by the USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station. (http://www.srs.fs.usda.gov/pubs/36915 http://wiki.bugwood.org/Invplantmgmt).

Presentation Summary:

Inspired by national and international efforts now underway, Weed Wrangle Nashville represents a fresh new push to stem the tide of biological pollution in local communities. The goal is two-fold: restoration and preservation. Organizers seek to raise awareness of the “green scourge” before more of our native plants lose the fight for the light and nutrients they require to survive. The Garden Club of Nashville, a member of The Garden Club of America, and GCA members from Chattanooga, Memphis and Knoxville are working hard to pull in other local groups to establish a corps of organized resistance to this blight on our environment. Friends of Warner Parks, Greenways for Nashville and the Radnor Lake State Natural Area are just a few of the partners now backing Weed Wrangle Nashville.  The first annual Weed Wrangle was held in Nashville, TN during the 2015 National Invasive Species Awareness Week. This event acted as a template for other cities in the United States to engage local communities to pull together to learn about and manage invasive plants. Steven Manning will discuss the financing, staffing, PR and goals behind this project including 10 sites (from elementary schools to the Nashville Zoo) that created a circle of natural areas around the greater Nashville area.  The 2016 event has spread statewide and the event sponsors envision this being a national event within two years.