Space invaders

I saw the most amazingly huge Jack-in-the-Pulpit flower (like this, and about 6 inches tall), last night. I’d joined the Friends of the Mississippi River and St. Paul Parks for an evening of pulling herbacious invaders. I can’t believe I didn’t think to bring my camera! There’s an excellent photo that shows a similar garlic mustard infestation here.

We worked in a pretty ravine near Crosby Farm Regional Park that is normally filled with bloodroot, trout lily, trillium and Jack-in-the-pulpit. This spring, said ravine was mainly filled with 3-foot tall (and almost to-seed) garlic mustard, and one small ginger patch. About 16 of us put a pretty big dent in it, but even just to get to that ravine we had to walk though a near quarter-mile of the invasion that was not slated for the guillotine on that day.

It’s fun to get dirty in the woods and learn about local plants.