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Volunteers needed to pull weeds for Purge Your Spurge event

Published: Wednesday, May 9 2012 1:57 p.m. MDT

SALT LAKE CITY — Salt Lake County residents are invited to participate in Saturday's annual Purge Your Spurge event, a weed pull and native plant exchange.

Volunteers are asked to help remove weeds from Salt Lake County’s Grandeur Peak open space and trail, at 2900 S. Wasatch Blvd from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. The weed pull is a project to rid the area of myrtle spurge, a noxious, invasive weed. Participants who help clear the mountainside of the non-native myrtle spurge will receive a voucher for the weeds they pull to be taken to REI to exchange for free Utah native plants.

Residents may also pick myrtle spurge from their own backyard to bring to REI for exchange, on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at 3285 W. 3300 South. Utah native plants may either be exchanged for myrtle spurge, or can be bought.

Myrtle spurge crowds out native plants in county foothills and contains a sap that is harmful to the skin and eyes. Weed pull volunteers are asked to come prepared with protective eyewear and clothing, including gloves and long sleeves.

Myrtle spurge is native to Eurasia, introduced to North America as a garden ornamental and is often used in rock gardens.

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