To: Greg Picard (Superitendent of Parks), Renee
Pasquinelli (Parks Ecologist)
From: Vince Taylor
Subject: Gorse Situation in Jughandle
Date: November 5, 1999
Dear Greg and Renee,
Thank you for taking the time to visit the south portion of Jughandle with Cal and I
this morning. Thank you also for promising to begin some immediate action to contract to
apply Roundup where appropriate, to request Peter Warner to provide a description
(suitable for a contract) of the methods that he used to kill gorse at Bodega Bay, to take
steps required to get CDF to intiate a controlled burn of gorse that has become
established on the cliffs of the headlands in south Jughandle, and to begin the steps
necessary to contract for a large-scale effort to attack gorse in Jughandle.
Unfortunately, the situation is ***much***, ***much*** worse than even I imagined. We all
agreed that gorse in the south portion is on the verge of becoming out of control, with
scattered gorse infestations throughout the park and solid, 5-8 feet stands along the
sourther edge. This dismal picture, though, pales compared to what exists in the portion
of Jughandle north of the creek.
After our joint tour of the south portion of Jughandle, Cal and I toured the north
portion. Compared to the north portion, the south portion is a "success story."
Thick infestations cover large areas throughout the north, and west of Gibney Lane, there
appears to be almost solid gorse from the road all the way to the sea. In some places, the
gorse stands were over 10! tall!
The only "positive" aspect of this situation is that most of the stands are
still small enough (under 5') to be mowed with a bush hog. To do this will not be a small
job, but doing it now will be *tiny* compared to what will be required next year if it is
not done this fall (before the fields get too wet for a tractor). As we know, mowing will
not eradicate the gorse, but it will buy time. Over the winter, this time needs to be used
to develop a comprehensive control plan and to go through all the hoops needed to get work
on the plan underway.
After looking at the magnitude of the disaster-in-the-making, I contacted Clint Freeman,
who does all of the gorse mowing of private lands in the neighborhood. He is an excellent
worker. Unfortunately, though, he does not have a contractor's license. Does this exclude
him from consideration? If so, do you know of others who could to this job on short
I can't emphasize too much the incredible cost of *any* delay in getting the cutting
program under way.
I will try to get some photos of the gorse conditions in Jughandle up on the Dharma Cloud
website (www.dharmacloud.com) in the next few days.