Maryland Invasive Plants Regulations Take Effect
Thursday, May 5, 2016
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
Maryland invasive plant regulations were published in the April 1 Maryland Register and took effect April 11. These regulations establish lists of Tier 1 and Tier 2 invasive plants, and require that signage be placed near retail displays of Tier 2 plants.
The regulations also describe mechanisms for listing and delisting invasive species, procedures for the disposal of Tier 1 plants, and an outline of conditions under which approval may be given for otherwise prohibited activities.
The first tier of regulated plants would pose such a significant environmental risk that they would be banned completely from the trade.
The second tier of regulated plants would pose a lesser environmental risk, but would be allowed in the trade only if the plants were accompanied by a warning label or sign at the point of sale. Landscape contractors would be required to advise their clients in writing if a landscape plan they were proposing included any of the second tier plants.
Tier 1 plants that were identified in the regulation are:
(1) Ficaria verna (fig buttercup);
(2) Geranium lucidum (shining cranesbill); and
(3) Iris pseudacorus (yellow flag iris).
Yellow flag iris is the only of these plants commonly seen in the trade.
Tier 2 plants identified in the regulation are:
(1) Euonymus alatus (burning bush);
(2) Ligustrum obtusifolium (blunt-leaved or border privet);
(3) Wisteria sinensis (Chinese wisteria);
(4) Wisteria floribunda (Japanese wisteria); and
(5) Wisteria x formosa (floribunda x sinensis hybrids)
All of the Tier 2 plants are commonly found in the trade.
Fines of up to $500 per violation can be levied by the Maryland Department of the Environment.