Chelsea Community Trail: Noxious and Invasive Plant Survey

Chelsea Community Trail: Noxious and Invasive Plant Survey

girl kneeling on edge of gravel road with clipboardOur summer student, Celeste Landon, performed a survey of noxious and invasive plants along the Chelsea Community Trail.

Celeste Landon is an environemntal science student at Simon Fraser University. As such, she is very well suited for this task. Celeste walked the entire 21 km length of this trail. She took GPS coordinates and various statistics at each incidence of a noxious plant.


Plant Type

A sample of her data and some preliminary results are Noxious Plants – Top 5 Highest Incidence Rate

shown. A final report will be available in October. This report will use the results of this study to recomend management practices.


Incidence Incidence

per km

Gout Weed Aegopodium podagraria

Manitoba Maple Acer negundo

This is a joint project between Sentiers Wakefiled Trails, Sentiers Chelsea Trails, and Voie Verte Chelsea.

Mean Area Per Patch

Buckthorn Frangula alnus

Coverage per km

Poison Ivy Toxicodendron radicans 101 Purple Loosestrife Lythrum salicaria


Common 1.5


Stinging Nettles Urtica dioica

Japanese knotweed Reynoutria japonica


Ragweed Ambrosia artemisiifolia


12 81.4

Note: These are preliminary results. A final report will be available in October 2020. 


29 Virginia Creeper Parthenocissus quinquefolia

39 sq m Dog Strangling Vine Vincetoxicum rossicum

25130.6 0.4

Poison Ivy

Purple Loosestrife

Virginia Creeper

Common Ragweed




51 sq m

248 sq m

49 sq m

108 sq m 1.9

1 628 sq m

2 999 sq m 1 461 sq m

2 195 sq m 905 sq m

1 273 sq m 35 sq m 1.2

17 sq m

20 sq m 11 sq m

7 sq m 2 475 sq m

1 320 sq m 81 sq m

31 sq m


Pandemic Babies on the Trail

My husband Geoff and I first started talking about moving to Chelsea after looking and looking for a home in Ottawa and realizing that maybe we wanted more than city living. Our friends Lydia and Felix have lived here for years and we would always come out for their legendary Halloween party and to hike in Gatineau Park. When I discovered I was pregnant last September the house hunt was on as our tiny apartment in Westboro just wouldn’t work with a new babe on the way. Oh and guess what, Lydia was pregnant too! Chelsea was looking more and more appealing. We purchased our first home in January with a closing date of March 15th, which turned out to be the peak of the COVID pandemic. Moving out to the woods couldn’t have come at a better time.

Moving while 7 months pregnant during a global pandemic came with its stressors, but we settled into our new space nicely and it immediately felt like home. We were delighted to have direct access to the neighbourhood trails right from our very own backyard. I went for several slow walks, waddling my way up and down the roots and rocks. Geoff took up the COVID friendly activity of trail running and soon had a mental map built up of all the loops and routes we could hike.

Lydia had her little boy Frankie in mid April, and our little Juniper was born at the end of May. COVID and our very pregnant states made it difficult to meet up before the babies, but as soon as we were both feeling up to it our mission was to figure out how our houses connected via the community trails. Coordinating newborn schedules and nap times was a challenge, but we both aimed to leave our houses at the same time and walk towards each other. Fifteen minutes later, babies strapped to us and already asleep, we met by the hockey ponds off of Musie Loop. That was easy!

We continued to hike to each other every week, showing each other the ways to our homes. Lydia shared her favourite loops around her house and I showed her what I had learned of mine so far. Endless little trails to explore and discover as we chatted all things baby, motherhood and raising little ones in the new world. Our hikes and these community trails became a safe haven from COVID, a space where we could walk with ease among the trees. Where you can pass your neighbours with a friendly bonjour/hello and not worry about that big scary virus. We’ve watched the seasons change from spring to summer to fall and as we head into winter we know it will always be safe to meet up on the trails with our little pandemic babies.

Story courtesy of Emily Wilfong