August 2021
Four scattered volunteers in work clothes hold shovels and other tools and smile standing in a brown mulch covered field
A happy crew after removing a large, dense stand of Arundo. Photo: Friends of San Ramon Creek.
Partner Profile: Friends of San Ramon Creek

Friends of San Ramon Creek (FSRC) was started in 2012 to support programs and projects that ​promote a healthy San Ramon Creek watershed. FSRC is in the midst of a multi-year Arundo Removal and Replacement Project, targeting the highly invasive giant reed (Arundo donax). Working with landowners and contractors along San Ramon Creek, FSRC's goal is to remove 131 Arundo stands covering a total area of 118,000 square feet. To date, the group has removed 35 stands of Arundo and is re-treating them as necessary to prevent regrowth. Community and landowner buy-in is essential because it typically takes 3-5 years of follow-up treatments to completely kill an established Arundo stand.

The volunteer team has been leading the effort to locate and map stands of Arundo throughout the Walnut Creek Watershed. Volunteers also remove and haul out Arundo, testing techniques to improve effectiveness. One particularly successful innovation is the use of a reusable plywood ramp to make hauling thick stalks up steep creek banks easier and faster, with less erosion to the riverbank.

The volunteer Arundo removal team works most Friday mornings in the summer. The work is difficult, dirty, and often on steep slopes, but it is quite satisfying to see the impact of removing the dense, tall stands. Once Arundo has been removed from an area, FSRC helps landowners replant with appropriate native riparian plants like coast live oaks and California willows. FSRC looks forward to giving native plants an opportunity to thrive and provide wildlife habitat in these previously Arundo-infested areas. 

Ready to get dirty and clean up the river? FSRC is always looking for more volunteers. Contact Chief Arundo Killer Mike Anciaux at or Co-Chair Dick Heron at
Learn more about invasive plants at the Cal-IPC 30-Year Anniversary Symposium, Oct. 26-29, 2021
Join us to connect, celebrate, and share knowledge. Our online platform has plenty of opportunities for interaction while keeping costs down for attendees.
·   Session talks, discussion groups, poster sessions, and opportunities to connect with sponsors and colleagues.
·   Statewide WMA Meeting
·   Herbicide Laws & Regulations
·   Early Career Panel
·   Exhibitor Gallery
Early Bird rates end Aug. 20. Don't wait!
Composite image of a woman in a face mask crouched to pull weeds a man in a hard hat reaching up to grab Arundo a group of people with a smiling woman in the lead hauling trash bags and a person scaling the side of a cliff
We are a diverse community of land managers. Photos (left to right): Emily Repech, American Conservation Experience, Michael Viramontes, Aaron Echols
Join Cal-IPC to support wildland volunteers across the state!
Cal-IPC is proud to bring you free wildland volunteer training sessions, resources, and connections to the weed warrior community.

Help us keep up the good work by joining as a member. Your member support makes it all possible!
A man in a baseball cap and long sleeves standing smiling in a field over brown and green shoots of Arundo stalks.
A crew member inspects regrowth of Arundo after initial cutting and treatment. Further treatment will be necessary. Photo: Friends of San Ramon Creek
Find more Wildland Volunteer Network resources online
Looking for more ways to connect? Find resources on the Wildland Volunteer Network section of Cal-IPC's website:

  • Online map of Bay Area volunteer projects
  • Organizations to volunteer with, sorted by county*
  • Archive of email newsletters with partner profiles

*You may need to check organizational websites to confirm if volunteer programs have restarted.
Young adults dig into a leaf strewn river bank and plant small green sprouting plugs of native grasses
Volunteers replant a site cleared of Arundo with native grasses. Photo: Friends of San Ramon Creek.
The Wildland Volunteer Network helps strengthen volunteer connections in the Bay Area and beyond. Learn more about WVN.