Biodiversity – Dec. 5/12
- HIPPO – direct causes of biodiversity decline today: I – invasive alien species.
- Periwinkle (Vinca minor) is an invasive alien plant in London, ON. It was introduced into North
American in the 1700s from Europe as an ornamental garden plant. It is used as a ground cover in
gardens and does a great job as a ground cover in our gardens. But it does not stay in out gardens.
Seed dispersal occurs by animals, wind, and water. It is now invading our Environmentally
Significant Areas (ESAs), such as the Medway Valley Heritage Forest ESA, one of the few remnants of
the eastern deciduous forest biome in the city of London. ESA is a term the city of London uses to set
aside land that can’t be developed on. Periwinkle forms a dense ground cover in our gardens and in
our natural areas. It outcompetes our native plant species. It decreases biodiversity and it does not
feed our native fauna. There are at least 55 invasive alien plant species in the Medway Valley
Heritage Forest ESA.
- Solutions: There are easy things we can do in our everyday lives that will make a difference. Start
small – reduce your carbon footprint one small step at a time. You’ll save money too. This means