Friday, June 6, 2014

Invasive Bush Honeysuckle

Another invasive species discovered in our planting beds this year.

Lonicera maackii (bush honeysuckle, amur honeysuckle, late honeysuckle, Maak's honeysuckle) is a  quick growing deciduous shrub reaching up to 15' tall with a hollow stem pith and pale, shredding bark. It thrives in forests, forest edges, and open grasslands forming dense stands. Plants leaf-out early and lose leaves late in the seaso, shading out native species and out-competes for nutrients.
It may be allelopathic, releasing chemical compounds which inhibit the growth of other plant

Amur honeysuckle is:
  • Prohibited (Red counties) species are not yet widely established in the state and pose great economic or environmental threat. Prohibited species may not be transported, transferred, possessed or introduced without a permit. Control of existing populations will be
  • Restricted (Orange counties) species pose great economic or environmental threat, but are already widely established in the state. Restricted species may be possessed, but may not be transported, transferred or introduced without a permit. Control of existing populations will be encouraged. 

Honeysuckle plants with a stem diameter of 1⁄2 inch or less can be easily removed by hand pulling when soil is moist. Because honeysuckles have shallow roots, larger plants can be dug or pulled out using a rope or chain placed around the base of the plant. All larger roots must be removed as the shrubs can resprout from any remaining roots. Revisit the site the following summer to remove newly emerged plants.
Larger plants that are hard to remove by hand pulling should be cut at the base with a lopper, hand saw, or carefully with a chainsaw. Repeated basal pruning during the growing season may eventually 
weaken the plant resulting in reduced sprouting. The effectiveness of cutting can be improved by immediately painting or spraying cut stumps with a selective herbicide such as triclopyr (e.g., Ortho® Brush-B-Gon® or Garlon 4®) or a non-selective herbicide such as glyphosate (the active ingredient in many herbicides including Roundup Pro®, Touchdown®, or Rodeo®-for use near waterways). 

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