Garlic Mustard forms dense monocultures that
reduce the biodiversity and aesthetic value of
natural areas. The effects of Garlic Mustard on
ecosystems are long-lasting and may permanently
alter forests, even after removal.
I'll give you a big AMEN on that note!...How many "ills" have we inflicted on mankind in the interest of 'Good Intentions' and the almighty dollar?...Thank you, David. Excellent point!
David Livingston wrote:The worst invasive I know is even trying to colonize other planets. I see one first thing every morning when I look in the mirror
R Ranson wrote:Check out Beyond the War on Invasive Species. It helps us re-think our approach to invasive species and their uses. Your local library should have it and if they don't then they should and you can tell them I said so.
When we present insects from Pennsylvania with plants that evolved on another continent, chances are those insects will be unable to eat them. We used to think this was good. Kill all insects before they eat our plants! But an insect that cannot eat part of a leaf cannot fulfill its role in the food web. We have planted Kousa dogwood, a species from China that supports no insect herbivores, instead of our native flowering dogwood (Cornus florida) that supports 117 species of moths and butterflies alone. In hundreds of thousands of acres we have planted goldenraintree from China instead of one of our beautiful oaks and lost the chance to grow 532 species of caterpillars, all of them nutritious bird food. My research has shown that alien ornamentals support 29 times less biodiversity than do native ornamentals.
Homeowners can do this by planting the borders of their properties with native trees plants such as white oaks (Quercus alba), black willows (Salix nigra), red maples (Acer rubrum), green ashes (Fraxinus pennsylvanica), black walnuts (Juglans nigra), river birches (Betula nigra) and shagbark hickories (Carya ovata), under-planted with woodies like serviceberry (Amelanchier canadensis), arrowwood (Viburnum dentatum), hazelnut (Corylus americnus), blueberries (Vaccinium spp) . Our studies have shown that even modest increases in the native plant cover on suburban properties significantly increases the number and species of breeding birds, including birds of conservation concern. As gardeners and stewards of our land, we have never been so empowered to help save biodiversity from extinction, and the need to do so has never been so great. All we need to do is plant native plants!