Invasive Plants Becoming Pervasive in Iowa's Woodlands

Aug 8, 2016

Invasive plant species are becoming pervasive in Iowa’s woodlands.  State Forester Paul Tauke says a recent survey found invasives present in 95-percent of forest inventory plots studied.  He calls it a “shocking” finding.

“When you have exotic invasive species, they expand into an area and they tend to crowd out the native species, and decrease your diversity in the system," says Tauke

Tauke says the most common invasive plants are the multiflora rose and reed canary grass.  He says invasives not only crowd out native plants, in some cases they also can create enough shade to prevent smaller plants from growing on the forest floor. That can lead to increased erosion and harm water quality. During this River to River interview, he talks with host Ben Kieffer.