Over the next few weeks visitors to the Hominy Creek Greenway, the 14- acre park between Sandhill and Shelbourne Roads in West Asheville, will see goats along the walking path. The goats are part of a partnership between the Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway, FOHCG, and the City of Asheville to remove invasive plant material from the park. Asheville Greenworks and RiverLink are also partners to maintain the 14-acre park. This is the first phase of goat herbivory, with a second phase happening later in the year.
Through a grant from Buncombe County, the FOHCG hired KD Ecological Services, to supply and manage the goats on the property, and ensure care and safety of the goats and visitors to the park. Goats will be monitored on a daily basis and will be on the property for approximately four to six weeks beginning this week through June. Goats are contained within electric wire fencing, along with an additional plastic fence along areas directly adjacent to the trail. Please be aware of the fencing when using the park with children and dogs. We ask that you do not feed or pet the goats.
Non-native plants are a growing threat in the Carolinas. They displace native plants and animals, decrease property values and hinder access to land resources. Using goats in particular is a very effective way to control non-native invasive plants by ecologically friendly technique. No machinery needs to be used, and little to no herbicide is needed to control large monocultures of non-natives.
FOHCG and the City of Asheville joined forces in 2013 to maintain and make improvements to the Hominy Creek Greenway. FOHCG and the city share recurring maintenance, while FOHCG takes the lead on special projects such as invasive plant control, trail maintenance and trail amenities.
For information about the invasive species removal project at the Hominy Creek Greenway, contact Jack Igelman at firstname.lastname@example.org or Debbie Ivester at email@example.com.
For information about the goats and the herbivory services, contact KD Ecological Services at 828-290-9380.