Jasper is a small town in a national park. Landscaping choices should reflect the natural surroundings. Residents are encouraged to choose plants and trees from the Recommended Plant Species list.
This list contains plant species that are both native to Jasper National Park and non-native. These recommended species are unlikely to become ecological problems by cross-pollinating with native plants or spreading into the natural environment. Preferred plant species are also drought resistant and do not attract wildlife such as bears or elk. Please refer to this list of trees that are not to be planted.
Alien weeds spread quickly and aggressively and they cause significant ecological damage by displacing native plant communities that stabilize the soil and provide food, shelter, and habitat for park wildlife.
There are over 120 species of non-native plants in Jasper National Park, mostly occurring in areas where people have the most impact: the Jasper town site. Of these, 10 weed species are the most aggressive and do the most damage.
In response to this ecological threat, the Municipality of Jasper amended their Municipal Herbicide Use Policy to allow selective spraying of noxious weeds in selected critical areas by Parks Canada.
Herbicides will not be used to control low priority weeds in the town site, or any weeds in public green spaces, playgrounds or school yards and all sprayed areas will be appropriately signed.
99% of Parks Canada’s weed control program involves manual and mechanical weed control and herbicide use is a last resort when no viable alternative means of control exists.