Weed Management

Stefan P. Parnay, Agriculture, Weights and Measures - Marin County

The Marin/Sonoma Weed Management Area (MSWMA) group was formed for Marin and Sonoma Counties in early 1999. The MSWMA unites individual ownership and public agencies, provides an opportunity to share resources in mapping and planning information, and helps control weeds across public and private land ownership boundaries.

The Marin/Sonoma Weed Management Area group includes representatives from federal, state, county and city agencies, private industry, and landowners. MSWMA’s goals include improving the effectiveness of local weed management efforts, increasing public awareness of invasive weeds, advancing responsible land stewardship practices, and working collaboratively with partner organizations by sharing resources and knowledge to manage and/or eradicate invasive weed populations. 

In 2008, the MSWMA received over $33,000 from the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) for the development of a Rapid Response Program. The program is designed to address early infestations of invasive weeds before they spread to larger areas and require costly control methods, or become completely uncontrollable. Under this funding, the Gold Ridge Resource Conservation District, a partner organization, assumed the role of Rapid Response Coordinator, and works to collect information on early infestations in Marin and Sonoma counties.

The larger Bay Area Early Detection Network website was developed to allow MSWMA partners, landowners, and the general public to report early invaders, keep informed about WMA activities and follow links about invasive weeds and control methods. Some high priority invasive weeds are found on private lands. The Rapid Response/Bay Area Early Detection Network connects MSWMA with ranchers, farmers, and private landowners to help address these infestations, with the goal of eradicating them before they become too large.