Ready to go live with What's Invasive!

I've written about What's Invasive! recently.

Briefly, it is an iDevice application (iPhone and Android are currently supported) that is used for mapping invasive plants. Users send geo-referenced photos to a server that provides community confirmation of identification and a map of confirmed locations. This type of map is useful for wildlands and green space management.

After a brief learning process spread over several days I've managed to get the Palos Verdes Peninsula database up and running. It ought to be live any time now pending some finalization that takes place on the server side by teh site administrator. There are at present only four invasive plants that are being tracked, but that's not a limit that we're stuck with, it's just what I felt was appropriate to start.

The most recent newcomer to on the invasives list is Terracina Spurge (Euphorbia terracina). The other three are Anise (Foeniculum vulgare), Castorbean (Ricinus communis), and Giant Reed (Arundo donax). I don't know that there's any A. donax, but I do know that the others are possibly the most common of any plant in the PV wilds. A chart accompanying the following link cites 60+ acres of a 200 acre fire area dominated solely by F. vulgare. In fact, they are considered the dominant invasive plant by the PV Peninsula Land Conservancy.:

The dominant non-native species within the grassland community of the Reserve are wild oats (Avena fatua), black mustard (Brassica nigra), short pod mustard (Hirschfeldia incana), and sweet fennel (Foeniculum vulgare). Non-native tree stands were also present along the main trails and hilltops. Non-native acacia (Acacia cyclops), eucalyptus and pine species are also dominant in the pre-fire vegetation communities of the Reserve.

Eventually the plants list ought to expand to include all the above plants.


  1. I see that it's up now.

  2. Just before noon I had an email from Eric Yuen, who is the other Eric working the Whats Invasive! project
    Hello Brent,

    This is the other Eric. I have added your park to the "official" park list. You will see this show up on the main page now.

    I've added your weed of the week as anise, fennel. This rotates every Monday to the next plant on your list. We hope to eventually expand the functionality of this feature to pull from a list of plants not in your current top invasives so that everyone can get some exposure to the other invasives in the area (and it will be less redundant :P ).

    You will notice now on your plant list there is a listing for "Other" plant. This is there so that users can upload images of other things they might see in the field they find interesting (for more experienced plant people, they could note locations of other invasives they find not on the list). This is for a future addition (hopefully soon) where we allow users to tag images that have been uploaded to help verify the data is correct or to help identify those plants marked as "Other".

    Thank you for your interest in the project. Let us know how things go and if there is anything else we can help you with. Your feed back is always welcome. :)


  3. Alas, it looks like our Canyon Walk will be rained out this weekend.

  4. Our local native plant society has a really active invasives eradication group. I'll pass on information. They might find this tool useful.