The Terrestrial Invasive Plant Initiative of the Lake George Land Conservancy
LGLC is actively working to monitor and prevent the spread of terrestrial invasive plant species within the Lake George watershed. LGLC's terrestrial invasive plant management plan focuses on inventory and control of the
five most threatening species on LGLC preserves and public lands in the Lake George basin, carried out by staff and staff-led volunteers.
Volunteers are vital in our ongoing efforts to diminish the threat of invasive plants. Cooperation and collaboration with the Adirondack Park Invasive Plant Program and other local organizations ensures that LGLC keeps up-to-date on possible threats of invasives and infestations.
In addition, LGLC accepts invitations to speak to garden clubs, schools, and other community groups in order to educate and provide assistance to private landowners and gardeners who will manage invasive populations on their own properties.
In 2007 LGLC hired two summer Resource Protection Stewards who spent three
months inventorying the entire Lake George watershed in order to identify key
locations in need of future management due to their proximity to especially
sensitive ecological areas (those areas with threatened or endangered plant or
animal species or habitats). The entire report can be viewed
here (6.5 MB pdf). Please forward any
questions or comments to
WHAT ARE NON-NATIVE, INVASIVE PLANTS?
Non-native plants are species brought here, both intentionally and as "stowaways," from other countries, or even from other regions of our country. Not all non-native plants are invasive, however. Invasive plants have the ability to reproduce and spread aggressively, often taking over natural areas and altering biological communities.
WHY WORRY ABOUT INVASIVE PLANTS?
Invasive plants have been recognized by ecologists as one of the top major threats to American biodiversity, second only to direct habitat loss. At their worst, invasive plants alter ecosystems and cause widespread degradation of natural habitats, negatively impacting humans as well as wildlife. Non-native, invasive plants also have created huge economic losses, by negatively affecting agricultural and range lands, navigation, power generation, recreation, water supplies, and public health and safety.
LGLC has identified the
top five terrestrial invasive plants of the Lake George watershed. These species have proven to be especially detrimental to the health of our public lands, roadsides, waterways, and backyards. Other significant terrestrial invaders in the Lake George Watershed include black locust, white sweetclover, spotted knapweed, Asiatic bittersweet, multiflora rose, winged euonymous (or burning bush), coltsfoot, black swallowwort, and velvetleaf.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Identification and early detection of invaders are crucial to preserving the quality of the land in our backyards as well as on larger tracts of both publicly and privately managed land. Some invasive plant species are still sold as garden and ornamental plants. When shopping for plants, ask for equally attractive native or non-invasive species. Urge nurseries and garden centers to sell only non-invasive plants.
The next step involves actual management and eradication of established invasives. Eradication techniques are different for each species. By knowing a little bit about each invasive plant’s biology, you can prevent well-intentioned control methods from doing more harm than good. Many invasives have the ability to resprout, even from tiny root, stem, or leaf fragments. Care must be taken to avoid spreading the plants’ seeds. Dispose of any removed plant material by letting it “cook” in the sun for several weeks while securely contained in plastic trash bags. This will effectively destroy any seeds and other viable plant material. The bags can then be taken to your local transfer station. Do not compost invasive plants!
If you have any questions concerning plants found on your property in the Lake George basin, please
contact LGLC. We can provide further assistance, suggest control methods, and help you to maintain a healthy, natural, and native yard.
Great sources of additional information: