Put Invasive Plants on a Starvation Diet This Year

Kathy Connolly surveying barbery-infested site at The Preserve State Forest.

It's March, and I'm back to the annual ritual of cutting woody invasive plants to the ground. March, April, and May are "prime time" for a technique called carbohydrate starvation (a.k.a. root depletion). My top target is Japanese barberry at a local state forest where I volunteer. Other bad actors include burning bush, privet, autumn olive, and multiflora rose. 

The photo on the right is from the first day of cutting an area three years ago. 

Why cut them at ground level, stem and all? How did they invade, anyway? Settle in with your clippers and loppers, read on, and at the end of the article, you'll find links to interesting history and the latest invasive plant research.

See the article at Zip06