Tree service professionals of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania share details of a few plant species that threaten native growth.
When Planting and Landscaping, Always Choose Native Plants
Every area of the world has a unique ecosystem with plants that are native or indigenous to that area. When other plants that like the same climate are brought in for decoration or even to attract pollinators, they can start competing with native plants and the biodiversity can be damaged. This is one of the biggest threats to the preservation of natural land in the United States.
The paragraphs below will answer why invasive species are a problem, what invasive species are the worst in urban forests and what can be done about it.
Are Invasive Species that Bad?
The short answer to this question is yes, but there are many practical reasons why non-native species can cause problems.
Plants that are from different areas of the world may be pretty, and they may even attract certain animals, but that doesn’t mean they should be outside cultivated botanical gardens. Invasive species present a significant issue for natural forests and fields because:
- They Limit Biodiversity: Biodiversity is a fancy term that just means there are a wide variety of plants and trees in a particular area. Invasive species can come in and choke out other plants by robbing the soil of nutrients.
- They Disrupt the Food Web: This can be explained through the example of pollinators such as butterflies and moths. Certain non-native plants may attract them for food, but the plants may not be suitable for these animals’ reproduction. The famously migratory monarch butterfly uses only certain plants, namely milkweed, for laying eggs. They may visit the flowers, but if they cannot reproduce, the insect population will drop and this can harm larger animals that regularly feed on the bugs.
- They can Wreck the Ecosystem: It’s all about balance. If a particular plant that is not native begins killing off other plants, that put them in danger of extinction and change the landscape in harmful ways.
What Are The Worst Invasive Species in Pittsburgh, PA?
Though this area of the country is known for its lush forests there are several non-native species that are becoming a problem throughout the state and some are particularly bad in urban areas.
What will be discussed here are trees, shrubs, and vines, although there are several grasses, herbs and aquatic plants that are considered invasive.
Some of the worst are included below:
- Bradford Pear
- Cork Tree
- White Mulberry
- Butterfly Bush
- Shrub Honeysuckles
- Chinese Wisteria
- Japanese Wisteria
- Mile-a-minute vine
What Can Be Done About Invasive Species?
Obviously, this is a problem that has not been created by a single person or entity and it takes everyone to help combat it. Whether you are an expert in tree care or not, you can make a difference in this case.
If a homeowner recognizes an invasive species on their property, they can contact a tree service company for help in tree removal and next steps. An arborist can help with planning new landscaping to include native plants. Tree and plant health care are part of the job, even more than tree pruning and removal.
About Greater Pitt Tree Service
For over 28 years, Greater Pitt Tree Service has managed the urban forest of Pittsburgh, PA and the surrounding areas. We offer 24/7 emergency service as well as same day estimates. Call today for friendly, professional service.