Environmental Education Videos Page 3
Invasive Plants- Did you know that there are many plants that have beautiful flowers but are not good for your yard or property? Invasive plant species spread quickly and can displace native plants and prevent native plant growth. Find out more in the videos below.
Purple loosestrife is a very hardy and INVASIVE perennial which can rapidly degrade wetlands. Although aesthetically pleasing, purple loosestrife quickly spreads across wetlands, diminishing their value for wildlife habitat. Wetlands are the most biologically diverse and productive component of our ecosystem. Hundreds of plant and animals species rely on a healthy wetland habitat for their survival. Please DO NOT plant purple loosestrife, but instead help the environment by removing it!
Honeysuckle is an invasive species that was introduced into Pennsylvania for ornamental landscaping and wildlife cover and habitat. Honeysuckle spreads quickly and chokes out many of our native shrub species. Honeysuckle also grows a small berry that wildlife will feed on. These berries do not have the nutritional value that many of PA's native berries possess. This results in our wildlife not receiving the proper nutrients they need in order to survive. Honeysuckle can be identified through the leaf shape and texture, the berry or flower, or the hollow pith found in the stem. You can remove Honeysuckle during the fall and spring by simply pulling out the root system.
Japanese Knotweed is an invasive herbaceous perennial that was introduced from East Asia as an ornamental and used to stabilize streambanks. It turns out, Knotweed is a highly successful invader of wetlands, stream corridors, forest edges, and drainage ditches. It provides poor erosion control, and its presence gradually degrades aquatic habitat and water quality. Growing up to 11 feet tall, Knotweed can spread horizontally via an extensive network of underground rhizomes, along which many shoots will sprout. Japanese Knotweed has several identifying features such as its bamboo-like stem, red or purple nodes, and heart-shaped leaves. In late summer, a cluster of white or pale green flowers with 5 petals will sprout from the plant. The new shoots in early spring are especially bright red or purple.
Knotweed is a tricky plant to control because their horizontal roots (rhizomes) are prone to splitting when disturbed and each fragment is capable of forming a fully functional clone of the parent plant. If the stems are cut, both the still rooted stem and the trimmed portion are capable of re-growing into new plants if in contact with moist soils. Due to these traits, Knotweed stands are extremely persistent, even after multiple removal attempts. The primary objective in controlling Japanese Knotweed is eliminating the rhizome system. It can be controlled, but time of year and the use of herbicides are key factors in successful removal. Knotweed often grows along our streams, so we recommend referring to a professional before trying to treat this invasive plant.