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Mr. Smarty Plants - Controlling Phragmites australis, common reed

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Friday - July 04, 2008

From: Grand Prairie, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Invasive Plants
Title: Controlling Phragmites australis, common reed
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I volunteer at Cedar Ridge Preserve in Dallas. We are currently chopping down an invasive called Phragmites australis around the pond. The belief is that by continuously chopping down the plant will stress it and kill it. Do you know of a better way? Thank you.

ANSWER:

The Nature Conservancy reports the successful control of Phragmites australis (common reed) in Kampoosa Bog, Massachusetts by cutting the reeds and then judiciously applying herbicide down the cut stumps of the reed with squirt bottles. This contained the herbicide within the target plant so that it didn't affect other plants nearby. You can read more descriptions of control methods used by the Nature Conservancy in "Control Comments from Stewards" and in "Element Stewardship Abstract for Phragmites australis".

 

 

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