ACRES Land Trust closed down its Little Cedar Creek preserve in December to stop the infestation of Japanese stiltgrass. Now that the weather has warmed up, ACRES is beginning the process of eradicating the invasive species.
Representatives from ACRES joined Allen County Highway Department foreman Rob Biggs at Little Cedar Creek Tuesday morning to begin attacking the invasive grass.
A large mower took several laps over the grass, and ACRES will continue to manage it with herbicides to prevent further spreading along the preserve and onto private lawns.
ACRES Director of Land Management Casey Jones says the process for completely eliminating Japanese stiltgrass is going to be a long one.
“As far as we know right now, the seed will remain viable for about five years,” said Jones. “We can kill everything you see here in one year. It’s an annual grass. So we spray it this year, everything you see is dead. It’s the next year we have to watch out for.”
This is the first time Japanese stiltgrass infestation has been identified in Northeast Indiana. The invasive species has also been found in Southern Indiana, and in 16 other states.