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Media inquiries: Please contact Gary Waugh, gary.waugh@dcr.virginia.gov, 804-786-5045.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: June 01, 2005
Contact: Jim Meisner Jr., DCR Public Relations Specialist, (804) 786-8442, jim.meisner@dcr.virginia.gov

DCR offers Phragmites control workshops for Eastern Shore landowners June 21

(RICHMOND, Va.) - Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation staff will conduct two workshops for Eastern Shore landowners about the reasons and methods for controlling the highly invasive plant, Phragmites australis, or common reed. The workshops are free.

Participants will receive a notebook with information about Phragmites and its control. For both sessions, coffee and light refreshments will be provided. Workshops will be held June 21 7-9:30 a.m. and 7-9:30 p.m. The workshops will be held in the Barrier Island Center, 7295 Young St., Machipongo, Va.

An optional late-morning field trip to a Phragmites herbicide test plot may be arranged, if interest warrants.

To register or for more information, call DCR Eastern Shore Region Steward Dot Field, at (757) 787-5576, or Rick Myers, at (804) 371-6204.

The workshops are part of the Seaside Heritage Program initiated by the Virginia Coastal Management Program, funded by the federal Coastal Zone Management Act.

Phragmites, a tall, aggressive, non-native plant covering more than 2,000 acres of habitat on the seaside of the Eastern Shore, is rapidly replacing native marsh and forest communities. As Phragmites spreads, it destroys high-quality wildlife habitat, forms windbreaks that reduce air movement, impedes water flow in drainage ditches, and poses a fire hazard to people and property.

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