East Hawaii News

Invasive Ginger Also Targeted on Public Lands Day

September 10, 2013, 6:23 PM HST
* Updated September 11, 1:54 PM
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Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park is calling for volunteers to help remove invasive Himalayan ginger.

The occasion is National Public Lands Day, which is being observed on Saturday, Sept. 28.

Park entrance fees are being waived for the day, an annual event described as the largest single-day volunteer effort for public lands in the US.

Volunteers taking part in the “stewardship at the summit” are asked to wear closed-toe shoes and long pants, and to bring a hat, raingear, snacks and water. Loppers and gloves will be provided.

Hawaii Volcanoes officials said although it is pretty and fragrant, Himalayan ginger, also known as kahili ginger, is one of the most invasive species in the park and in the world. It has garnered a spot in the “100 of the World’s Worst Invasive Alien Species” list assembled by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.

Highly flammable fountain grass is shown dominating this slope in Ka`u. NPS image.

The ginger removal is being done in conjunction with control of highly flammable fountain grass, shown here dominating a slope in Ka`u. NPS courtesy photo.

The plant grows quickly into the native rainforest understory, displacing such native plants as pa`inui, a type of Hawaiian lily, and `ama`u ferns.

The ginger removal at Kilauea’s summit will take place from 9 a.m. to noon under the guidance of volunteers Paul and Jane Field. Meet the fields at the Kilauea Visitor Center.

The effort is being held in conjunction with the removal of fountain grass in Hawaiian Ocean View Estates.

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