Coalition to Control Kudzu Infestations without Chemicals

March 2008 Newsletter

 

Tracks for the skid loader:  After guidance by Howard Miller and three tests, we purchased a used set of metal tracks. Better traction now makes it possible to remove kudzu otherwise out of reach. The new grapple hook boom, designed and built to our specifications, continues to work well.

 

SC-EPPC Joint Kudzu Control Study: Rehabilitation work on the bank behind the Beacon has started. Hay mats are now deployed on the steep bank to help hold the soil.

 

Tina Gragg: Tina’s interview on Doug Keel’s radio show “Speaking of Schools” will air at 6:30 PM Monday, April 7, on Public Radio. She describes the kudzu “wrangling” experiences of her Environmental Science classes.

 

Invited back: Mary Morrison, Forester at Sumter National Forest, has asked the Coalition to do a follow- up project with her organization as it seeks to find alternative controls for kudzu. In 2007 our Kudzu SWAT team successfully removed kudzu from a 23 acre site that was treated twice previously with herbicides.

 

"Cooking with Kudzu": Alana Willingham, Clemson Extension Service, has announced a cooking contest for all the upstate. Entries will be judged and tasted by all at Kudzu Kapers on April 19.

 

New T-shirts: Thanks to Dianne Fergusson and Mott Bramblett we now have kudzu warrior t-shirts.

 

Youth Art and Writing Awards: Contest rules are now posted on our web site. We are very grateful to the anonymous donor who has generously funded these awards and other prizes that will be given at Kudzu Kapers. Mott Bramblett and Betsy Teter have arranged for the artists at Hub-Bub to do the judging. Grades 6, 7, and 8 will be split out from grades 9, 10, 11, and 12 for separate cash awards. Mayor Bill Barnet will be present. For details, see  http://www.kokudzu.com/KudzuKapers2008.html .

 

Student community service award: Thanks to the same anonymous donor, cash awards will be made during Kudzu Kapers on April 19 to the school groups which have contributed the most hours in the patch controlling kudzu since January 1, 2008. First prize is $100, second is $75, third is $50, and fourth is $25. Four schools are in the running and our guess is that the current standings are: 1. Chapman High, 2. Broome High, 3. Spartanburg High, 4. Day School. The race is very close. 

 

Containment fenceSteve Patton brought in, dug the holes, and “planted” the posts at Peter's Creek Preserve. Paul Savko, Howard Miller, and Don Oldham hung the shade cloth fabric and put up the supporting wires. This new site was named "The Landing" by Howard Miller, who did the bush hog work.

 

Award: For the second year in a row, Allegra Printing has awarded the Coalition $500 to be used in the purchase of printing. This will be very, very helpful. Thank you!

 

"No Student Left Indoors” field trip: Steve Eargly's Special Ed class at Spartanburg High is taking a field trip to Rose Hill State Historical Park on Thursday, April 10. Steve took a class last year.

 

SWAT team: Rich Mead and the folks at Conestee Nature Park in Greenville have asked us to travel there help them kill kudzu on Saturday, April 12. It is so nice to be invited back.

 

Kudzu sprouting: On March 26, we saw many buds and a kudzu sprout one inch long. The fight begins.

 

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Thank you for your continuing interest and support for the environment, the community, and the students.

 

Newt Hardie, Kudzu Coalition