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Managing Invasive Plants

Buckthorn, honeysuckle and Tree of Heaven are just a few of the landscape plants that have left the garden and invaded our natural spaces.

These aggressive plants outcompete and crowd out our native plants, destroying the food and habitat needed by wildlife. They also invade our gardens, crowding out desirable plants.

Many gardeners are reluctant to remove them as they provide privacy or screen a bad view. Plant a garden or hedge to take its place and get busy removing these invaders.

Pull or dig small seedlings as soon as they appear. Or remove a 6-inch strip of bark around the base of the plant.

You can also cut the plant to the ground in fall and treat the stump with a brush killer recommended for this purpose. Or paint the bottom 12 inches of the trunk with a brush killer. This prevents the roots from resprouting.

As always read and follow label directions carefully.

A bit more information: Aggressive plants, unlike invasive plants, crowd out their neighboring plants, but do not leave the bounds of the landscape.  Avoid aggressive plants if space and time are limited. Or limit aggressive plants from spreading by growing them in small, contained beds or containers. And do not plant invasive plants that will take you years to eliminate in your yard and nearby natural areas.  Click here for a list of the more common invasive plants.

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Mequon Nature Preserve
Mequon, WI

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Sanger House Gardens
Milwaukee, WI

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Pasquesi Home & Gardens
Lake Bluff, IL

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