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How do I remove invasive species?

If you have identified invasive species on your land you may want to consider removing them in order to stop them from spreading and replace them with native species. Left unchecked they can choke desirable trees, shrubs, grasses, and flowers.


  • Japanese Stiltgrass forms dense stands and crowds out native species

    Japanese Stiltgrass forms dense stands and crowds out native species

    Pull plants from the ground. Make sure to remove ALL of the root system as many plants will grow from leftover roots in the ground.

  • Suffocate smaller seedlings and herbaceous plants by placing a couple layers of UV-stabilized plastic sheeting over the area for at least two years. Extend plastic at least five feet beyond problem area on all sides and secure edges with stakes or weights.
  • Mow infested areas frequently in order to disrupt photosynthesis. This method can take up to 5 years as the plants battle to survive. Eventually they will exhaust reserves and die. Collect all the pieces of the plant as it is mowed.
  • Chemically kill plants with herbicides. Use caution when utilizing chemicals in areas that children and animals may come in contact with. Avoid using chemicals near ponds, streams, and drainage areas. Always follow the directions on the package for best use and follow your state and local regulations. Many herbicides are non-selective and will kill native plants as well. For more information on herbicides contact your state’s pesticide management division. New York State’s can be found HERE.

*Be sure to remove ALL of the plant. Even small fragments of roots and stems can sprout. If not correctly collected, attempted removal can spread the plant causing an even larger problem.


  • Burn – Following local fire safety regulations (including burn bans) pile and burn materials.
  • Pile – Most woody debris can be piled and left. Use caution with species such as Japanese Knotweed which will reroot from fragments.
  • Dry – Woody debris can be left out on asphalt to dry over a month. Herbaceous species should be put put into doubled-up black garbage bags and left in the sun for one month. Generally after that time they can be thrown away normally.



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