A professional crew working on the steep slopes to the right and left of the entrance steps cleared a significant amount of ivy and blackberry. Applied Ecology led by Justin Howell worked September 23-26 all day. To the left of the steps the crew cleared a large area of ivy. To the right of the steps, in the picture, blackberries were removed. Restoration work will continue in October with conifer and shrub plantings on the slope in the picture. The crew will not plant ground cover just yet because there will be Himalayan blackberry regrowth. Blackberries will grow back, no matter how thoroughly the area is cleared. The regrowth can be managed with maintenance: 1) excavating the root crowns and large roots, 2) repeated removal of the aboveground vegetation and 3) densely planting native vegetation to shade the Himalayan blackberry because seedlings require exposure to high sunlight for survival. In my view, here is the best description of Himalayan blackberry (Rubus armeniacus)
UPDATE: Thursday, October 10, 2013, Applied Ecology is back to plant an estimated 500 shrubs and ground covers on the ivy-cleared slopes.