Invasive Blackberry Root Removal by the Pitt Meadows Community Garden – October 28, 2023

Invasive Blackberry Root Removal by the Pitt Meadows Community Garden – October 28, 2023

Group photo of the awesome community members who joined us for this activity!

Highlights From The Day

  • 28 amazing community members of diverse ages, backgrounds and experience levels joined us and contributed 87.5 hours total!
    • Thank you so much for your hard work and enthusiasm on this frosty day: Alexis, Ali, Anthony, Anwar, Brandon, Cedrik, Cinthia, Daniela, Erick, Gary, Gill, Hui Hang, Jan, Jim, Kirk, Liyuan, Maggie, Milena, Naya, Nicholas, Quinn, Ryo, Sam, Shona, Stuart, Tristan, Yanan and Zoe!
      • Special thanks to:
        • Everyone for helping pack up tools and supplies after this activity, many hands make for light work!
        • Jan and Gary for using your real life Tetris skills to lead the loading of items safely in the van
        • Anwar for arriving at 8:30 to help us set up and for staying after the activity to get us packed up
        • Alexis, Jim, Kirk, Shona, and Maggie for helping us rake our worksite to make for easier root removal
        • Tristan for helping keep track of the number of roots removed
  • Our youngest volunteers, ErickAnthonyTristan and Yanan weren’t afraid to get their hands dirty and had an incredible impact. We love seeing all ages, especially youth, engaged in sustainable action!
  • Our Green Team brought together people from across the region including from Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows, Abbotsford, Delta, Burnaby, Langley, Richmond, Vancouver and West Vancouver!
  • 23 people visited the Pitt Meadows Community Garden for the first time
  • 5 people removed invasive plants for the first time

  • Together our team:
    • Removed approximately 550 invasive Himalayan blackberry roots and lots of blackberry canes and debris, totalling a volume of 16 cubic metres (100 bathtubs full)! Blackberry roots are stubborn and require more effort to remove and take up less volume, but are essential to reducing the chances of plant regrowth
    • Congratulations to Tristan & Gary, and Daniela & Zoe for winning “most roots removed” with both teams digging up 70 and 49 invasive Himalayan blackberry roots respectively!
    • Removed roots from an area of 215 metres squared
    • All of our work will directly support the planting of new trees later this fall!
  • Scroll down to see the pile of roots and debris removed, as well as some in-action shots!

  • Our Community Investment Partner, the City of Pitt Meadows, provided direction and funding to make this activity possible!

  • This was the 3rd activity led by our Program Coordinator, Andrea!

Photo of the massive pile of invasive blackberry we removed!

All of our work will directly support new trees which will be planted by the City of Pitt Meadows later this fall!

Why Do We Do This Work?

The Lower Mainland Green Team organizes hands-on educational activities that have a positive environmental impact to empower people. Through activities such as invasive plant removals, plantings, litter cleanups and more, we are fostering connections with others and nature so that health and well-being is prioritized, lifelong environmental stewardship is promoted, and community members are enabled to take care of themselves, each other and the places they live. We all have the power to make a difference!

We all experience mental and physical health benefits from spending time in nature, including reduced stress and anxiety, and improved mood, focus, memory and more. While doing so, we can also have a positive impact on the environment as demonstrated through this activity!

Partner For This Activity

A huge THANK YOU to the City of Pitt Meadows for partnering with our charity, Green Teams of Canada, and making this activity possible with their financial support and direction!

Together we are achieving our common goals and creating connected, healthy and resilient communities engaged in environmental stewardship.

This was our 3rd and final activity of the year with the City of Pitt Meadows, with past activities taking place at the future Rose Grabenhorst Garden on May 13, 2023 and at Hoffmann Park engaging local Girl Guides on June 1, 2023. We look forward to continuing our work together in 2024!

What Volunteers Said

“I enjoyed the well organized and meaningful work with people who were welcoming, warm and friendly. Also the home baked brownies were hype.”

– Stuart

“A new place and different terrain and I enjoyed the wonderful result. The event was wonderful, the choice of place was successful and all the volunteers were happy because we made a wonderful effort and helped the environment. If you want to increase the happiness hormone (Serotonin), just join this wonderful team”

– Anwar

“Blackberry takes over everywhere it can, we’re digging through inches of mulch and finding live seedlings that have broken off from roots and are ready to take over again so I’m hopeful that we can turn this into an actual, liveable, native forest instead of the invasive species sanctuary that it has been. It’s a beautiful day, it was really cold this morning but now it’s gorgeous and a great day to be working outside. Super satisfying to pull this stuff out and see the progress that you make over the course of the day, and having a great team of people doing it is making it all better. I’m super grateful for the opportunity!”

– Shona

In-Action Photos

Snack time!

Lots of worms were founded while digging, a great indication of healthy soil!

Many great conversations with new people were had throughout the day!

In-Kind Supporters

Thank you to the following businesses for donating items to thank our amazing volunteers:

  • LUSH for providing Ro’s Argan Body Conditioner
  • Carina Organics for providing natural body wash
  • OLA Bamboo for providing reusable bamboo utensil kits

Our Staff

This was the 3rd activity led by the Lower Mainland Green Team‘s Program Coordinator, Andrea Robles (right)!

Green Teams of Canada‘s founder and Executive Director, Lyda Salatian (middle), provided support and training for this activity.


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