Invasive Plants & Insects
What is an invasive plant?
Though there are many definitions, a useful one is: a non-native species capable of moving aggressively into an area, monopolizing light, nutrients, water, and space to the detriment of native species.
Why should we care?
Many of the familiar plants in our gardens, fields and forests aren't native to New Hampshire. While the majority cause no harm to natural habitat or managed farms and forests, many do. Invasive species can: reduce biodiversity; imperil rare species; reduce wildlife habitat by eliminating native foods, altering cover and destroying nesting sites; degrade water quality; reduce forest and agricultural crop production; and cause health problems.
The law governing invasive species
There are 35 plant species banned in New Hampshire. The New Hampshire law (RSA 430: 53-57) and the rule are enforced by the NH Commissioner of Agriculture and prohibits the collection, possession, importation, transportation, sale, propagation, transplantation or cultivation of the banned plants. The NH Invasives Species Committee advises the Commissioner.
What can you do?
1. Learn more about the problem.
- Managing Invasive Plants in Our Yard...In Our Neighborhood...In Our Watershed
- What is an invasive and why should we care?
2. Learn to identify them.
- Guide to Invasive Upland Plant Species in NH
- Field Guide: An Ecological Perspective of Plant Invaders of Forests (links to original and the supplement)
- Weeds of the Week
3. Use native plants in your landscape, garden and conservation projects.
- Alternatives to Invasive Landscape Plants
- Looking for Burning Bush? - Poster
- Looking for Japanese Barberry? - Poster
- Looking for Norway Maple? - Poster
- Integrating Landscaping: Following Nature's Lead
- NH State Forest Nursery (to purchase native seedlings)
- New England Wildflower Society (to purchase native plants)
- Landscape Trees and Their Susceptibility to Invasive Insects (fact sheet or poster)
4. Remove invasives from your property.
- Identifying and Controlling Non-native Invasive Plants
- Control of invasives in your backyard
- Control of invasives on your woodlot (Forest Service)
- Controlling Invasive Species in Woodlots (Cornell)
- Best Management Practices for Roadside Invasive Plants (a manual by the NH Department of Transportation)
- Mechanical Controls of Glossy Buckthorns
- Guide to Invasive Plant Control (The Northeastern Area Invasive Forest Plant Species Project)
- Invasive Plants from Good Forestry in the Granite State pdf or html
5. Don't spread invasives when you dispose of them.
Invasive Plant Outreach Group (IPOG)
IPOG are volunteers supported by UNH Cooperative Extension and other partner organizations concerned with non-native invasive plants. IPOG develops educational intitiatives on invasive plants through a focus on research and practical applications. Projects and activities include:
- This webpage: www.nhinvasives.org
- Presentations to community groups
- News articles and television segments
- Fact sheets for homeowners and landowners
IPOG shares information with homeowners and landowners; municipal workers and local government officials; conservation organizations; non-profits; landscapers and gardeners; schools, colleges, and universities; and civic and youth organizations.
IPOG meets three to four times a year in Concord and welcomes individuals who are concerned about invasive plants to join. For more information, contact Mary Tebo Davis at email@example.com.
Other websites to visit
- Coastal Watershed Invasive Plant Partnership (CWIPP)
- Forest Service
- Invasive Plant Atlas of New England (IPANE)
- Invasive Plants (Cornell University)
- NH Invasives Species Program
- NRCS Plant Database
- Piscataquog Land Conservancy
- USDA Invasive Species
N.H. State Agencies
- NH Pesticide Control Board
- NH Department of Transportation
- NH Division of Forest and Lands
- UNH Technology Transfer Center
- NH Department of Environmental Services
Other New England states