It is sometimes necessary for us to use chemical applications in combination with prescribed fire and mechanical techniques to restore and maintain the native, pine-barrens plant communities.
Why chemical management?
We are tasked with restoring and maintaining an inland pine barrens ecosystem within the preserve. Although we prefer to use prescribed fire and mechanical techniques to accomplish this goal, these tools are at times ineffective. Many plants will not be killed outright by fire or cutting alone. Most will re-sprout from the stump and/or root system. In either case, cutting or burning creates even more of the undesirable plants rather than less! Plants that can’t be killed by fire or cutting are treated with herbicides to eliminate them from the landscape.
We use several different herbicides for chemically managing plants in the preserve, depending on the time of year and specific plant species to be controlled. The most common herbicide we use is Glyphosate (active ingredient in Round-Up). More information can be found in the Invasive and Overabundant Species Management Plan for the Albany Pine Bush Preserve (Appendix E of the 2017 Management Plan Update).
Chemical management is most common in the fall and winter, but we use it selectively at other times of year.