Summer-drought has major effect on native species of trees on Vancouver Island

Summer-drought has major effect on native species of trees on Vancouver Island
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WATCH: Humans aren’t the only ones feeling the heat this summer. Ceilidh Millar reports on how some much-needed rain is on the way. 

Biologists from The Land Conservancy of BC are getting rid of an invasive species crawling the forest floor of the Ayum Creek Regional Park Reserve in Sooke.

“It’s an aggressive garden escapee that is unfortunately just blanketing the floor,” explained Torrey Archer with the Land Conservancy.

Archer and her team are using cardboard and piles of mulch to smoother the pesky periwinkle growing in the region.

“It basically starves out the light, and if it doesn’t have light, it can’t grow,” Archer said of the technique.

During their clean-up, it becomes apparent that the effects of this year’s summer drought has taken its effect on native species of trees on Vancouver Island.

“It’s an evergreen so it really shouldn’t be doing this,” Archer explained while examining an evergreen leaf that is turning yellow around the edges.

According to local meteorologists, August was the fifth driest on record in BC.

Only 1.9 millimetre of rain was recorded at the Victoria International Airport last month compared to the average of 22 mm.

However, the province is about to get its first significant rainfall according to Lisa Evreen with Environment and Climate Change Canada.

“We’re looking at seeing more rain over the next 5 days than we’ve seen pretty much all summer long,” Evreen said.

Archer says the summer-drought is having an effect on trees more and more every year.

“All the plants need [the rain] as everyone can see,” Archer explained.

The Land Conservancy will continue their restoration work at the park reserve this Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For more information on the event, visit their website.

Ceilidh MillarCeilidh Millar

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