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Natural Awakenings - Alachua, Citrus, Marion, Sumter Co & The Villages, FL

Weed Whackers Unite, Gainesville, FL Greenway Challenge

The Gainesville Greenway Challenge conducts Give Back Thursdays weekly between 9 a.m. and noon, and on the first Saturday of the month, removing exotic invasive plants including coral ardisia, Caesar's weed and more. The aim is to restore natural habitat in Gainesville by removing species that threaten ecosystem health.


An invasive exotic species is a plant or animal which has established itself in a location other than its native range and is causing harm to the environment, economy, and/or human health. People have been introducing species around the world since they were able to travel. Around the early 1500s, Europeans brought plants and animals to new settlements in North America and elsewhere. Although many introduced species are harmless and used for food or landscaping, there are a number of species that have no natural growth controls and threaten native Florida habitats.


More than 50 percent of Florida’s native listed plants are threatened by invasive exotic species through direct destruction or crowding. Invasive exotics know no boundaries and will grow beyond a homeowner's yard and into neighboring natural areas. Approximately 130 invasive exotic plant species currently pose a threat to Florida’s natural areas.


For more information, call 352-393-8425, email [email protected] or visit