Invasive species are a problem. They move into an ecosystem and take over the niches that would otherwise be occupied by native species. Often they are aggressive plants or animals that have negative effects in their new homes. One of the examples of this here in Northwest Arkansas is the bush honeysuckle. It crowds out other species and forms dense clumps of shrubbery. Birds eat the fruits, but they are not very nutritious, so it’s providing junk food to birds and can be harmful to the local wildlife in the process.
The future Nature Play Space area was choked with bush honeysuckle. The First School parents, FUPC’s Earth Care Task Force and our church family band together to remove the plants from the space. Cut surfaces were painted with Roundup to discourage the bush honeysuckle from growing back.
The newly cleared space will be developed into a Nature Play Space for First School. This space will allow children to play in a safe, natural area. Many children do not have opportunities for free play outdoors, and this space will give them the chance to benefit from natural play.