The City of Detroit will conduct controlled burns at two west side parks Wednesday. The Detroit Fire Department will oversee the blazes, which will cover seven acres at Rouge Park and five acres at Eliza Howell Park.
The fires are intended to wipe out invasive species and germinate soil at the parks.
"Both River Rouge and Eliza Howell Park were seeded with native plants in 2000, but some portions have become a monoculture -- that is overtaken by one native species -- or have been degraded by an overgrowth of non-native plants," according to a newsletter from the Alliance of Rouge Communities, a non-profit consortium of local municipalities and other groups helping the city conduct the burns.
Workers will start the the Rouge Park burning 11 a.m. Wednesday and follow up with Eliza Howell Park around 1 p.m. The burns will take approximately 30 minutes each and will lead to some roads being closed off to the public, the Detroit Free Press reports.A controlled burn took place at Belle Isle last week near the park's zoo and golf course. The burns are funded through the federal Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.