Submitted by the Grange
Join the San Juan Island Grange on May 9 for a thoughtful discussion of how we can approach gardening, farming, forestry and land management with a more nuanced understanding of invasive species. How can we mimic nature in managing the overabundance of a particular species? The event is part of the San Juan Island Grange Lecture Series at 7 p.m. at Grange Hall. The lecture follows a 6 p.m. potluck.
Tao Orion is the author of “Beyond the War on Invasive Species: A Permaculture Perspective on Ecosystem Restoration.” She is passionate about linking restoration with the thoughtful design of human and non-human habitat. Orion lives with her family near Eugene, Oregon, and is a permaculture designer, educator and farmer.
How do we deal with the rising tide of invasive species spreading throughout our island and our world? What role are these plants and animals playing in the ecosystem and how did they get here? We live in an era of unprecedented concern for the damage being done to the natural world, but also an almost equal level of concern about plants and animals out of place. In a world beset by pollution and climate change, are invasive species just one more nail in the coffin, or a sign that life will find a way?
Invasive species and invasive plants, in particular, pose a complex challenge for our society. Thorny and poisonous weeds proliferate alongside roadways and in our hayfields while others spread anywhere footsteps touch. Yet some of these invaders perform essential functions providing food and habitat for wildlife while we destroy them with toxic herbicides in the name of environmental restoration. Some species create monocultures that smother diversity, yet hold potent medicinal properties or have other vital uses waiting to be harvested. Wherever we disturb the soil, something will take root whether we like it or not.
Join the Grange for a meal, or just come for the lecture. The Grange is nonpartisan, and so is this event. All are welcome, including kids. Part of the Grange Lecture Series, organizers strive to support a resilient community of growers, makers and keepers to foster social and political engagement and to maintain the hall as a home for celebrations and programs.