With funding generously provided through the National Forest Foundation’s Treasured Landscapes conservation campaign, the Council for Watershed Health is helping to initiate the planning stages for eradicating Arundo donax, a highly invasive non-native plant, in the Upper Tujunga Wash Watershed.
Arundo (commonly referred to as giant reed) significantly impacts water quality, water availability, habitat, wildfire, and infrastructure. The Council developed a comprehensive baseline map documenting the Arundo distribution and size (58 total acres) across the 153 mi2 watershed. Arundo spreads only by downstream dispersal of fragments (no viable seed is produced); therefore detailed watershed mapping of infestations that employs systematic control from the headwaters to mouth are key for planning projects in which complete eradication is the goal.
This project aims to protect the Angeles National Forest and surrounding foothill communities above Hansen Dam from the ecological, hydrologic, and structural damage caused by this particular plant. The eradication implementation team (including the National Forest Foundation, U.S. Forest Service, Los Angeles Conservation Corps, and Dendra Inc.) will utilize this baseline survey to accurately define acreage and estimate costs for upcoming grant proposals, assign prioritization for implementation, facilitate regional permitting, and track eradication progress over time.
The Council for Watershed Health is the trusted hub for essential watershed research, analysis and education in Southern California. It is uniquely positioned to influence and inform policy by conducting applied research that is reliably fair, objective, and rooted in science and convene stakeholders to share the research results.