Saguaro National Park Going After Buffelgrass

April 24, 2014

Officials at Saguaro National Park have finalized a plan to restore native vegetation in the park.

Park officials plan to attack the spread of buffelgrass, which has been growing throughout the park for almost 30 years, choking out native grasses, with the potential to virtually take over the park.

In addition to hand-pulling the buffelgrass, park officials will use herbicides that are effective against the non-native grass but do not accumulate in the water or soil and are virtually non-toxic to wildlife. Helicopters will be used to spray remote, inaccessible areas that are dominated by buffelgrass.

The Restoration plan, approved this week by the regional director of the National Park Service, will also attempt to mitigate the impact of wildfires, and flooding on park lands.

Saguaro National Park straddles the city of Tucson and is home to the nation’s largest cacti.