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Horticulture & Gardening Tips

LI's 'dirty dozen' invasive plants
By Susan Matthews
Posted: 2023-09-09T19:06:12Z

Environmentalists removing invasives from the Sands Point Preserve last month call English ivy just one of the "dirty dozen". These are the most pervasive and common species on Long Island that can outcompete natives for water, nutrients and sunlight and create ecological dead zones, as reported by Tracy Tullis ("Newsday", Aug 29). Don't think of planting them in your yard, because birds will fly off to preserves and poop, creating mayhem. Learn to identify and remove these "dirty dozen" from your yards: porcelain berry, bamboo, tree of heaven, Oriental bittersweet, Japanese barberry, multiflora roses, Chinese wisteria, mugwort, burning bush and English ivy.

At the same time invasive plants support invasive insect species. The spotted lantern fly, which threatens local wineries and vegetable farms prefers the tree of heaven. They look like moths but are actually not flies but plant hoppers with black bodies and legs and piercing mouthparts.

For more information on how to spot and report these nasty buggers check this USDA look-alikes guide

Learn how your actions can make a difference to protect Long Island lands and waters with Long Island Invasive Species Area (LIISMA)