Begin with a Plan

To obtain the greatest level of success, it is crucial before beginning any control efforts to develop a plan that establishes priorities, both in terms of species and areas to control. Generally, this involves focusing attention on invasive plants with the greatest potential to damage natural areas or restorations.

Evaluate the Site

At times it is impractical or impossible to remove or treat all invasive plants in a particular area. If the area is large, map what kind of invasive plants are present, where they are located, their level of infestation (light, moderate, severe), and the location of important native plants or plant communities. The map will help you to prioritize areas for control efforts and can be used in subsequent growing seasons to relocate priority sites. Make sure to record the level of progress and make any necessary adjustments to your control strategy.

Work From Least Infested Areas Towards Most Infested Areas

In general, areas in the early stages of invasion, or those on the outlying edges, should be targeted for control before areas of severe infestation. If trying to protect an area from encroaching invasive plants, work from the area you are trying to protect outward.

Control Invasives in a Poor-Quality Site Adjacent to a High-Quality Site

If a badly infested area is an imminent threat to a high-quality area, it may be important to target that badly infested area to prevent the invasive plants from spreading. Controlling the invasive plant is extremely important if it is new to the region and is known to have caused major environmental or economic damage. It is also important to control the areas along roads, trails, and streams because mowers, hikers, and flooding can contribute to the spread of invasive plants.

Map Your Progress

Note the location where control efforts have been made and return each year to remove additional that have emerged in the area. For more information on this, see the Monitoring page.

Article on Planting Trees and Shrubs After Invasive Species Control

This article about planting trees and shrubs after invasive species control was written by our board member Mic Armstrong to give you an idea on how to plan for your site after invasive species have been controlled. Mic will be updating this article periodically (last updated January 30, 2019).


There are some funding opportunities available to help some of you with invasive species control. Funding page.

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