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Page City Ordinance Requires Tumbleweed Cleanup

March 18
16:15 2014

It’s time to cleanup the tumbleweeds in Page, Arizona as Page City Ordinances prevent property owners from growing weeds or grass over eight inches high or allowing weeds which are dead, dormant, stickers, potentially injurious or so dry as to be readily flammable or combustible.  Plant or non-noxious weed growth utilized for grazing is allowed in Residential Estates. Burn permits are available from the Page Fire Department at the Page Public Safety Building. Please do your part to reduce the tumbleweed population in Page.

TumbleweedsMany Page area residents were treated to a close up view in past weeks of the great Eastern migration of the terrible tumbling tumbleweeds. The tumbleweed is definitely not an endangered or threatened species and flocks of tumbleweeds were seen huddled along fence lines and flying down the streets of Page.

The most common tumbleweed is Russian Thistle, imported from Asia in shipments of flax seeds to South Dakota in the early 1870’s. Russian Thistles, a noxious weed, have made the most of disturbed soils and natural habitats with sparse vegetation. Mature dry plants detach from the roots and blow with the wind, scattering thousands of seeds along the way. Tumbleweeds can be used as forage for livestock but otherwise serve no useful purpose. A single Russian Thistle can remove up to forty four gallons of water from the soil while competing with other plants. The motion of tumbleweeds can damage the protective soil crust creating more erosion.

Tumbling Tumbleweeds

There’s only one good thing having to do with tumbleweeds, and that is the song recorded and made famous by The Sons Of The Pioneers.  You may remember some of the lyrics:

See them tumbling down
Pledging their love to the ground
Lonely but free I’ll be found
Drifting along with the tumbling tumbleweeds

Cares of the past are behind
Nowhere to go but I’ll find
Just where the trail will wind
Drifting along with the tumbling tumbleweeds

by Pam Brown

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