Invasive Plant Baskets

Adrian and Carl Klarner

Coiled pine needle style basket made from Scotch broom with ivy beads and purple embroidery floss.

Adrian Klarner is just getting started creating baskets and other objects from invasive plants, with an emphasis on English ivy and Scotch broom.

Adrian and her spouse, Carl Klarner, have spent many hours ripping out invasives, which gave Adrian the idea that it would be fun to make something out of them. They often work with the Sequoia Park Ivy League (SPIL) or in the McKay Community Forest. Since January 1 of this year, Carl has spent 198.2 hours removing ivy and other invaders.

Adrian wants to form a group to make baskets from invasive plants! The purpose of the group is to make items to sell in order to raise money for invasive plant removal. The group will also bring attention to native ecosystem restoration and the problem of invasive plants.

Coiled pine needle style basket made from Scotch broom with multi-colored embroidery floss.

Hiring people to remove invasive plants will supplement the hard work done by volunteers. Given the scope of the task, we need all the help we can get. Not everyone has to tromp into the wilderness battling sticker bushes, mosquitoes and dehydration to rip out invasive plants. Instead, they could sit in a comfy spot and make baskets to further the cause.

Adrian is happy to teach anyone how to make baskets who wishes to join the group, no matter what level of experience. There is no fee to join the group. We would only ask you to donate some of the baskets you make from invasive plants for the group to sell. Contact if you are interested in helping.

Group members are not expected to harvest invasives for materials, and we will show you how to prepare them, which involves drying and soaking. People who wish to provide space for material prep would also be providing important support.

Those who wish to help with invasive plant removal—for craft materials or not—can contact Carl at

Three wicker baskets made entirely of English ivy.

Aside from funding invasive plant removal, what are the other positives about using invasive plants for usable materials?

  • It will immediately cause some invasives to be removed, allowing native plants to return.
  • It means native plants won’t be harvested for basket making, as they’re under enough pressure as it is.
  • Locally sourced materials cut down on shipping costs to the crafter and the environment.
  • If this group can create a demand for items made from invasives, others might start using them as well, spurring more to be removed.

A natural concern is that this demand might cause people to grow invasives for harvest. This isn’t likely, as invasive ivy and broom are ubiquitous and free for the taking.

Adrian is also making wattle garden fencing out of Scotch broom. Planned future projects involve wicker furniture and bicycle saddle bags made from invasive ivy.