They may be beautiful. They may look nice as lawn ornamentation. They may even be as familiar as the bouquet from the florist. But make no mistake: non-native plants and animals threaten native flora and fauna as well as the enjoyment residents and visitors derive from the area. Knotweed, barberry, baby’s breath and Eurasian milfoil are just a few of the invasive species found in our fields and forests, lakes and waterways. Some target specific hosts, such as hemlock wooly adelgid, and before that, the emerald ash borer. Others simply crowd out native plants, such as garlic mustard or autumn olive. The Northwest Michigan Invasive Species Network works with a number of partners, including the Leelanau Conservancy, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the Leelanau Conservation District, the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians, Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore and numerous private landowners to combat these and other invasives.

Join local foresters, certified arborists, and resource professionals for a day of planting at Ruby Ellen Farm, 5946 S. Center Highway, Traverse City, on Saturday, Oct. 12, from 9 am-12:30 pm.

Join Inland Seas Educational Association, the Leelanau Conservancy, Leo Creek Preserve, Leelanau Conservation District, Grand Traverse Stewardship Initiative, Northport Energy and Leelanau Montessori for an afternoon of Earth Day activities on Sunday, April 22, from 1-4 p.m.

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore will host its annual pruning workshop on Friday, May 3, in the Port Oneida Rural Historic District. The workshop will be held at the Dechow farmstead in the Port Oneida Rural Historic District, four miles north of Glen Arbor on M-22 across from Port Oneida Road. Directional signs will be placed to help participants to the location.