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Thread: Invasive Plants

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Belchertown, MA
    Posts
    103

    Default Invasive Plants

    Invasive Plants

    Hello all. I wanted to post some information about invasive plant species because I think it's very important. I own a consulting firm that has been involved with eradication of invasive species for more than 12 years and have a lot of experience working with these and many other species. I see lots of folks are using Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica) and/or common reed (Phragmites australis) for mason bee nesting materials. I think it is very important to note that both of these species are aggressive invasive plants. Invasive plants are plants that outcompete native species and destroy the complexity of our natural ecosystems. Once established these species can be quite difficult to eradicate.
    While there in nothing wrong with using either of these species for nesting material you can take some simple steps to keep these species from spreading.

    1. Never throw plant fragments/clippings/leaves from either of these plants in your compost bin, in the woods etc. Both of these species can spread from any fragment of the
    plant and will establish themselves quickly. Common reed can spread from fragments but seeds are the most typical form of spread. Make sure you do not spread the seed heads.

    2. Dispose of clippings in your trash in a sealed plastic bag.

    For more information about invasive plants in your state do a Google search for your state name and “invasive plant species list”. Or if you want more information please contact me and I will do what I can to help you out! If you send pictures I can most likely ID the plant. For specific information on these species you can go here:

    Japanese knotweed: http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/p...knotweed.shtml

    Common reed: http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/a...mmonreed.shtml

    You are all helping the environment with you mason bee work. Don’t offset those positive benefits by spreading invasive plants!

    John

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Hampton CT
    Posts
    360

    Default Re: Invasive Plants

    Boy, If it wasn't for invasive plants, Beekeeping wouldn't be worthwhile in CT. BTW Honey bees are also an invasive species in this hemisphere.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Invasive Plants

    Dictionaries in the south define THE invasive plant as Kudzu!
    Greg Whitehead, Ten Mile, TN
    Blog - http://gregsbees.blogspot.com/

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Pisgah Forest, NC, USA
    Posts
    58

    Default Re: Invasive Plants

    Regardless of whether or not invasive are beneficial to bee keepers, I think we have a responsibility to our environment to do the best we can to try to limit the impact of invasive species. Federal and State Governments spend millions of tax payer monies (yes your money), each year in an effort to limit or eradicate plants and animals that have a negative effect on our native plants and animals. I think it's our responsibility to research things before we cultivate them in our backyards because they look nice, or because they have a positive effect on our bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Belchertown, MA
    Posts
    103

    Default Re: Invasive Plants

    Adam you have a great point. CT and MA have a ton of invasives. Purple loosestrife, another widepsread invasive plant is an important late summer bloomer for bees. And honey bees are not native to the US you are correct. They are not technically not considered invasive but "introduced". Semantics, I know.

    Amen Slow Modem. We are fortunate to not have kudzy issues here in NE (yet).

    Ranger Cody, well said.

    Got to tell you I am very excited to start with mason bees this spring.

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