The inevitable bad news

24th September 2007, Monday

… is that New Zealand Pigmyweed (or Australian Swampweed) Crassula helmsii, has made it to Castle Water. Normally we would be pleased to add a new species to the reserve list, but this is an alien species that can dominate a wetland. It was found today, scattered along about 400m of the margin of the wetland created only a year ago. It is about 10cm above the current water level, so on the next dry, calm day we will try to eradicate it with herbicide. However, it is tiny (the flowers are about 1mm. across) and it will be impossible to find all the small plants, but we must try because it will smother a habitat that is important here for wetland plants and invertebrates. In the RX area it has been found at Powdermill Reservoir, Dungeness and Pett Level and control is carried out at the last two.