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Forum, Aug. 11: Dealing with wild parsnip

Published: 8/12/2022 3:51:42 PM
Modified: 8/12/2022 3:48:28 PM
What to do about wild parsnip

Henry Homeyer’s recent article about the ‘bad’ plants he has put in his garden included wild parsnip. “Plants to avoid before they take over the garden,” Aug. 3.

This handsome tall flower with beautiful yellow blossoms has a few problems:

One: it is non-native and invasive, without predator insects or disease, and crowds out other plants

Two: It has a toxic sap that can cause skin burns if exposed to sunlight

Three: It can invade and degrade fields to dominate other plants, and is difficult to remove once it is established

One day last week, three volunteers cleared 2,000 feet of roadside parsnip next to the new Mink Brook Community Forest; the stalks were collected and put in a pile covered by black plastic, to keep the seeds from spreading further.

If you have the plant in your neighborhood, please help others remove it. You need to wear trousers and long sleeves, and wash down with soap afterward. Now, the plants have ripening seeds and are pretty dry, with little sap. Ideally the work would be done earlier in the year, soon after the stalks start to bloom .... but now, best to stack cut plants on a tarp before moving them to a final resting place; seeds are nearly ready to fall off. Seeds are viable for about 4 years, so the plants will emerge in future years but with reducing numbers.

Barbara Mcilroy


An education,
one day at a time

I read with a smile the recent Forum complaint and cancellation letter from Wilder. I’m from Wilder, too. I could add that four times in June I plucked my paper from the roof of my car and once I blow-dried it before I could read it. I did not graduate from college. Life did not give me that option. I was born, though, with an unquenchable thirst for learning. Using Google is fine, but my newspaper is my smorgasbord. Thank you, my deepest gratitude for all I have learned over the past 20-plus years.

Karolyn Bowen


Two books about
diversity and inclusion

YEAH! for Friday’s article on the organizations and businesses in the Upper Valley that are embracing issues of diversity and inclusion (“A commitment to inclusion and belonging,” Aug. 4). Two books speak loudly about practical, day-to-day ways that an organization’s culture can support diversity and inclusion: Inclusion Revolution by Daisy Auger-Dominguez and The Diversity Factor by James McKim.

Anne Peyton

South Strafford

Placement of photographs seemed off

It seems odd to put the picture of the murderer on the front page (“Guilty plea in fatal 2018 shooting,” July 28), while the victim’s is relegated to the depths of page five.

Patricia Henderson


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