Cheryl Harner's Flora and Butterfly Blog
Weedpicker's Journal: Discover the native plants of Ohio and the butterflies that utilize them.
Mustard of Menace May 10, 2007

It is hard to believe there is a plant I do not like. IF there were such a thing, Garlic Mustard, Alliaria officinalis would be it. It is not so much that I do not like the plant, after all it has a mildly pleasant garlic smell, but rather I do not like its invasive behavior in native places.

On a tour of Mohican Outdoor School today, I was shocked at the unchecked growth of this alien species. Not only does it multiply rapidly, it chokes out the native spring ephemerals. Nothing could be more heart-breaking than the loss of the diversity of beautiful flowers which sprout in the rocky outcroping of Mohican's crown jewel. Home to several rare and state listed plants, this area is starting to be over run by Garlic Mustard. I cannot walk by without collecting as much as possible for ellimenation. Many folks agrue that it is impossible to control. I have 10 years of experience on this topic on my property, so I feel qualified to answer that it can certainly be slowed. I pull garlic mustard on my walks and pile it in heaps. Yes, it can still go to seed if conditions are right. But at least the seed is contain to one locality, not 3 acres. Yes, it often breaks off at the root. The optimium time to pull is shortly after a good rain fall. Either way, for every one you pull today, that is approximately 100 seeds that will not sprout noxious plants needing pulled next year.

"It is a shame to do nothing because you can only do a little. Do what you can" Sidney Smith

2007-05-11 02:42:40 GMT
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