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PLNA e-News: Plants, Pests & Diseases

Up to 120 Plant Species to be Considered for Regulation in Pennsylvania

Monday, October 14, 2019   (1 Comments)
Posted by: Gregg Robertson
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Purple Loosetrife

HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Invasive Species Council (PISC) is considering recommending that as many as 120 plants identified as potentially invasive be recommended for regulation by the Controlled Plant and Noxious Weed Committee (CPNWC).

PLNA has a seat on both bodies. Gloria Day represents PLNA on the PISC and Tom Tilley represents PLNA on the CPNWC. Gregg Robertson is an alternate on both bodies.

The PISC will consider sending all or some of these plants to the CPNWC for regulatory consideration. In addition, other plants could be added to this list. PISC is only advisory so any regulatory action would have to be taken by the CPNWC. The CPNWC was created by legislation supported by PLNA in 2017, after many years of negotiations. Read more about the CPNWC by clicking here.

Economic Value Survey

To analyze the potential impact of regulating these plants, PLNA sent a survey out to its membership via SurveyMonkey in February, 2019. The survey asked members to rate plants as having “no value” to the industry, “some value” to the industry or “high value” to the industry. Forty-three members completed the survey.

The information gathered in this survey will be used as input to the plant evaluation protocol that is being established by the CPNWC. This protocol will include the environmental harm caused by a plant species. Those species that rate highly on the protocol will be considered for regulation, which could mean licensing the propagation and growing of a species to complete bans on propagation, growing, possession or transport.

A copy of the results of the PLNA’s survey can be downloaded by clicking here.

CPNWC Takes Action

On April 25, the Controlled Plant and Noxious Weed Committee of the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture (PDA) listed four new plants as noxious weeds. Three of these plant species were aquatic and one terrestrial. All were on the list of 120 included in PLNA’s survey, but were assessed a having low economic value to the industry. The plants so listed were:

  • European frogbit (Hydrocharis morus-ranae)
  • Water primrose (Ludwigia grandiflora ssp. hexapetala)
  • European water chestnut (Trapa natans)
  • Tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima)

Listing these species as noxious weeds makes it illegal in Pennsylvania to distribute, cultivate or propagate them. The action took effect July 30, 2019.


Orsolya Lazar says...
Posted Saturday, November 9, 2019
Would be more useful to ban species that are known to be invasive and sold in nurseries instead of banning species that nobody is planting. Some of the worst invasives are burning bush, barberry. They should not be sold at all.

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