Monthly Archives: August 2013

Great Lakes Phragmites Collaborative Webinar Series

The Great Lakes Phragmites Collaborative webinar series has focused on invasive Phragmites in the Great Lakes region to encourage dialogue and technology transfer throughout the region. This series will include topics such as: Current research on Phragmites control, management techniques and case studies, monitoring and assessment protocols, mapping and tracking and regional management initiatives. Much of the information can help us understand phragmites management in southeast Ohio.

To access their past recordings, click on this link:

IPC invasive plant webinar series archive

I wanted to direct everyone to a valuable series of previously recorded invasive plant webinars.  Content covered can be important to anyone, including private landowners, all the way up to regional managers of invasive plants.  Check it out if you have some time.

Phenology update: Garlic Mustard

100_3393Garlic mustard – Alliaria petiolata; Basal rosettes have normally grown enough to be easily spotted now.  The garlic mustard in this photo is particularly robust.  Also notice the Johnson grass in the background, and ground ivy in the front.

new Aquatic Invaders guide – Crown of Continent

This guide wasn’t made for Ohio, but much of it is relavent.  Check out the section on plants, most of these threaten Ohio.

Jen McBride, an environmental science graduate student, created a pocket guide titled “Aquatic Invasive Species Threatening the Crown of the Continent.” The tool aims to help identify and prevent aquatic invasive species from invading the Crown region. Species included in the guide were selected by agency professionals based on proximity to the Crown, potential impacts of invasion and likelihood of introduction. The 116-page guide will be distributed to land managers and others. View it online.

MIPN Aquatic Fact Sheets


MIPN has put together several new aquatic invasive plant fact sheets. Fact sheets for the plants listed on our Aquatic Invasive Plants in the Midwest Flyer are included. Check them out on our Early Detection Rapid Response webpage!

Brazilian waterweed (Egeria densa)
Brittle waternymph (Najas minor)
Eurasian watermilfoil (Myriophyllum spicatum)
European frogbit (Hydrocharis morsus-ranae)
European water clover (Marsilea quadrifolia)
Hydrilla (Hydrilla verticillata)
Indian swampweed (Hygrophila polysperma)
Parrot feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum)
Pond water-starwort (Callitriche stagnalis)
Reed manna grass (Glyceria maxima)
Swamp stone crop (Crassula helmsii)
Water chestnut (Trapa natans)
Water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes)
Water lettuce (Pistia stratiotes)
Yellow floating hearts (Nymphoides peltata)

Remember you can support MIPN’s work by becoming a member today!

Lara Vallely
Midwest Invasive Plant Network

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Beauty becomes the beast

5479587Have you been wondering what the dense stands of attractive purple flowers are that you’ve been seeing along roadsides and wet areas? It is probably purple loosestrife, a quite attractive plant.  However, beneath this superficial beauty lies an aggressive, untamable beast.  If left uncontrolled, purple loosestrife will take over our remaining wetlands.

Native to Europe and Asia, purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) was speculated to be first introduced to the United States from colonial settlers as ship ballast was unloaded from their sailing ships.  Additionally, horticulturists imported seeds for landscaping and gardens.

Purple loosestrife grows in dense stands along waterways and wetlands, choking out native wetland species.  Thick growth can reduce water flow by clogging drainage ditches. With a seed production as high as 2 million per plant, the ability to reproduce from fragments of its stem, and a high tolerance to water and variability to soils it has spread across most of the United States and can be found in many areas in Ohio.  Once established, an individual plant can often live as long as 20 years.

5445973Showy magenta to purplish flowers with 5-7 petals on long 4- 18 inch spikes makes this an easy plant to identify from July to September. Leaves are attached to the stem in sets of two or three.  Stems typically have 4 or 6 sides and are slightly hairy.  In the fall, leaves turn vibrant red in color. Plants often have up to 50 stems of up to 8 feet tall, with the whole plant sometimes as wide as 5 feet. No other wetland plants will create dense stands and have purplish flowers.

5479722Ohio regulations prohibit the sale of purple loosestrife without a special permit from the Director of the Department of Agriculture.  Although some sterile varieties of purple loosestrife are available, they often produce viable seeds when cross pollinated with other cultivars.  If the look of purple loosestrife is what you want for your landscape, play it safe and consider using these native alternatives: Blazing stars (Liatris spp.), bee balm (Monarda fistulosa), swamp verbena (Verbena hastata), joe-pye weed (Eutrochium fistulosum), and cardinalflower (Lobelia cardinalis).

You can find additional information here:  If you are interested in volunteering to map purple loosestrife this summer or have any additional questions contact Eric Boyda at or 740-534-6578.