When introduced beyond their natural geography, many species of trees and vegetation can infest and degrade land while harming native ecosystems. They have the potential to overtake fields and forests, or even the resources native grasses and vegetation need to live, which results in killing off valuable grazing and production land.
The Boxelder is an adaptable, easy-to-grow maple tree native to North America. Boxelder trees have brittle, weak wood and typically grow near water or river banks.Known by a dozen or more aliases, including river maple, sugar ash, maple ash, California maple, ash-leaf maple, and Manitoba maple, boxelders spread quickly, grow fast, and are highly prone to breakage.
If you live or work in the Southeast, you have admired breathtaking trees that have made their home as part of the southern landscape. Beautiful, old trees that have been around for generations could tell some interesting stories to the intrusive trees that have moved in and taken over. We explore some of the main invasive trees impacting the Southeast and how to tackle them.
The Brazilian peppertree (Schinus terebinthifolius) grows natively in Argentina, Paraguay, and Brazil, and Americans first brought it to Florida in the 1840s. Today, this invasive species occurs in some of the United States' warmest regions, including Florida, California, Hawaii, Texas, and Georgia.
Sumac refers to approximately 35 species in the genus Rhus, a member of the Anacardiaceae flowering plant family. Sumac grows in various parts of the world, including temperate climates in Eastern North America.
Do you have an overgrown property or need to clear land for a future development site? Land can become overgrown with brush and trees for a multitude of reasons. It has been a long-time belief that clearing land is only something that can be tackled by large contractors that have specialized equipment. This is not true – as skid-steers and heavy-duty attachments allow private landowners and contractors to take on land clearing jobs.
In Oklahoma, Texas, and Kansas, the eastern red-cedar (Juniperus virginiana L.) has substantially reduced livestock production and profitability by 75% in the rangelands it invades.
Originally limited to rocky bluffs and other areas where fire couldn't reach them, eastern red-cedar tree populations expanded with the introduction of European land management practices to the United States. A decrease in controlled burns allowed forests to spread, including this now-invasive species. It extended from its native Kansas to nearby states, where it overtakes prairie plant life.
The Australian pine is an invasive tree found primarily in FL, HI, CA, AZ, and TX. In 1898, the USDA first planted Australian pine to stabilize banks and use as lumber. Today, this invasive species interferes with the plants, wildlife, and soil around it.
Kudzu is an invasive plant that originated from parts of Asia, including China, Japan, and Korea. It was introduced in the U.S. in the late 1800s as a way to shade porches, specifically in the south.
Osage Orange, which is also known as hedge apple, horseapple, bowwood, or bodark, is native to the Southern United States. Its tough wood has been used for fence posts, archery bows, and wheel rims for horse-drawn wagons by pioneers. It also was commonly planted as a living fence line before barbed wire as another way to contain livestock.