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Down & Dirty

Pitching in for the environment


Educating to

prevent invasion

The East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District is offering a Weed Watchers class for those who want to identify non-native species.

In a two-hour class offered twice this month, learn how invasive weeds spread and how to tackle them before they can grow.

Invasive weeds harm Oregon’s natural cycle by threatening natural resources like water, disrupting salmon and animal ecosystems. There are more than 150 species on the Oregon’s list of noxious weeds, according to the Unites States Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resource Conservation Service.

The U.S. spends more than $120 billion to hold back invasive species on more than 100 million acres across the nation, according to the Oregon Invasive Species Council.

The class aims to prevent invasive establishment and growth through education on how invasive weeds spread, complicate and dominate native Oregon landscapes.

The class is free and will be held twice at the East Multnomah Soil and Water Conservation District office, 5211 N. Williams Ave., on Friday, May 16, and Saturday, May 17. Sign up online at emswcd.org/workshops-and-events.

Clear out the ivy

English ivy, a major invasive weed in the Pacific Northwest, has overrun Forest Park. The city is calling for help removing the ivy at a No Ivy League Work Party.

On Saturday, May 17, from 8:45 a.m. to noon, volunteers will hike off the trails to remove the ivy. Ivy requires little light or water, grows fast and is a climbing vine, covering the ground as well as trees.

Last October, Portland Parks and Recreation celebrated their 10th annual No Ivy Day. Ivy was cleared from more than 48,000 square feet and 150 trees at 13 sites. More than 115 volunteers contributed more than 345 hours of labor to protect Portland parks.

To participate, meet at the Field House at the Lower Macleay Trailhead, 2960 N.W. Upshur St. at 8:45 a.m. Wear long-sleeved old clothes and boots. Gloves and tools will be provided by Portland Parks and Recreation.

Prettify the Willamette River banks

Garden along the Willamette River with South Portland Riverbank Partners on Saturday, May 17 from 9 a.m. to noon.

The volunteer-based group will plant and care for native vegetation at Willamette Park, remove invasive species and pick up litter along the banks.

They meet monthly every third Saturday except in August and December, working to improve habitats and water quality. Activities vary, but they all promote cleaning and improving natural ecosystems along the Willamette River.

Training will be provided, along with tools, gloves and snacks. Dress for the weather with close-toed shoes and bring a water bottle.

Meet at Willamette Park at Southwest Macadam Avenue and Southwest Nebraska Street by the north end of the boat ramp parking lot. Volunteers receive free parking passes.

Prevent litter at

the Starlight

Anyone age 13 and older can volunteer with SOLVE this month to distribute litter bags at the Starlight Parade.

The Starlight Parade is hosted by SOLVE and Portland General Electric and will be held from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. on May 31. More than 100 glowing entries will parade through more than two miles of downtown Portland.

To volunteer with the pre-parade team from 5 to 8 p.m., meet at the PGE Parade Tent on West Burnside Street and Northwest Park Avenue.

To volunteer with the post-parade team, meet at the PGE Parade tent at 9 p.m. and stay until midnight. Heavy lifting and operating mechanical machines may be needed.

Register on solv.org/get-involved.

Living Future confab includes challenges

The International Living Future Institute hosts its eighth annual conference, Beauty and Inspiration, at the Portland Hilton May 21 to 23.

The conference features workshops, projects, activities, case studies, neighborhoods and nonprofits as well as Living Building Challenge ambassadors, emerging green professionals.

Register online at living-future.org/register.