Mama Gone Green is a blog dedicated to raising happy children and reducing our impact on the Earth. My name is Taryn and I am the mother of 2 young kids and an environmental studies instructor at a community college in Portland, Oregon. Please join me as I journey through life as a mama, teacher, knitter, photographer, gardener, and environmentalist!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Ivy Pullin'!

Today I brought my students out to do some volunteer work instead of the typical field trip we do on Friday mornings.  We headed to a section of Forest Park (with an employee who works for the city of Portland there to lead us) and we helped to demolish as much english ivy as we could in an hour and a half.
English ivy is a terribly invasive species in Portland. It spreads by seeds and by roots, and the mild winters here allow it to thrive and continue growing all winter long. It is everywhere. We helped to restore a small part of the Forest Park ecosystem back to its native plants. It felt really good to spend my morning getting rid of a pile of the invasive ivy, and it made me want to make volunteering a more regular thing. I think Finn, who is almost 4, is probably old enough to come along on some volunteer adventures, and would probably learn a thing or two as well.
Do you have invasive species where you live? Do you and your family find time to volunteer? Pin It Now!


  1. Nice teamwork ;)
    what a fun day to be out in the forest - for sure it didn't even feel like work - right?

  2. The stick fence you've probably seen in pics of our garden and bunny run, are made of Ailanthus trees. They are invasive anywhere and we have a lot here in our area of CA. In fact, in some areas, its illegal to plant them b/c they push out all other plants. They were consuming the area around my mom's barn so my husband set to work killing them off. Its taken years. The trees grow stright up, making them great for building, actually, so I'm glad I figured out a way to make this invasive tree into something useful and pretty (not to mention the whole free fence aspect).

  3. Love that you did this! We have tons of kudzu, Amur honeysuckle, purple loosestrife, and garlic mustard. There are many others (including English ivy), but around here, those are the biggest threats. Honeysuckle is terrible around here, and an hour south of us, kudzu is terrible.