Invasive Plant Control Database

Welcome to the Invasive Plant Control Database

This website contains information on how to control many invasive plants common to the Midwestern United States. Information was collected from both scientific literature and expert opinions and summarized by the Midwest Invasive Plant Network (MIPN), in partnership with the Mark Renz lab from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Methods that are uncommon, do not provide sufficient control, or lack information for determining effectiveness on target species are omitted. For each species, information was reviewed by four individuals, including two identified as experts on control of that species. Information is searchable by several fields to improve the user’s ability to find pertinent information. To view the search feature, you must first select an invasive plant. Additionally, users have the option of entering personal experiences with managing specific species (see “add new case studies” under search results). These case studies will be visible to all users once verified by MIPN staff.

We make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability, or availability with respect to the information or products on the website. Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk. References to pesticide products on this website are for your convenience and are not an endorsement or guarantee of one product over another.

Step 1: Select Plant

Step 1: Select a species by choosing a common or scientific name from the list, or by typing a name in the search box.

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Step 2: Select Search Parameters

Step 2: Select search parameter(s) of interest. If no parameters are selected all control methods will be displayed. For effectiveness ratings, methods that meet or exceed the criteria selected will be displayed.

Under the Search Results you will find

  • Plant Identification information – information on species identification, including photographs and a current distribution map.
  • Ecological Threats – threats posed to natural ecosystems by this species.
  • Case Studies – Detailed success (and failures) on how to control specific species contributed by experienced personnel.
  • Non-chemical and chemical control methods that fit the selected search criteria. Please note you are responsible for using pesticides in accordance with the label directions and state and federal laws. Herbicide availability and registered uses vary from state to state. Contact your state department of agriculture for information on the correct use and licensing required for any pesticide application.

You may reset the search criteria or the species you have selected at any time by selecting the corresponding links on the right hand side of the page.

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Seasons:



Effectiveness (in season): 


Effectiveness (year after treatment): 
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Search Results

Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife)

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Case Studies
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Non-Chemical controls
New (Type)Description
Type -
Mowing

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Mowing or cutting in late summer after flowers have emerged, but before seeds are produced will reduce the number of shoots and seeds produced, but provides unreliable levels of suppression. Mowing three times in a season, starting in late spring and repeating before flowers form on regrowth, will provide suppression for the entire season. Use a mower that bags cut material or rake and bag cut material after mowing and dispose of it in a landfill or burn it to avoid potential for above ground tissue to resprout.
Type -
Prescribed burning

User Type -
Professional

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Burns can kill germinating seedlings and suppress above ground growth of established plant depending on fire intensity. However, the habitat that loosestrife grows in are rarely conducive to fire. This makes it difficult to have a complete burn that significantly damages loosestrife populations. After the fire, established plants will likely be quick to re-sprout and reinvade areas; this management method is not recommended unless integrated with other techniques. A hand-held propane torch can be effective for treating seedlings.
Type -
Removal

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Pulling and digging can be effective individual plant control techniques. Pull if soil conditions allow for the removal of all root tissue. This is easier with a first or second year plant as its root system is not extensive. Root fragments left behind can resprout. Bag all plant material and dispose of it in a landfill or burn it to avoid potential for root material or above ground tissue to reroot.
Type -
Manipulation of the environment

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Flooding can be effective at reducing purple loosestrife populations, especially if used in conjunction with cutting stems. Cut the stems of purple loosestrife so that the part of the plant that remains rooted is below water and remains submerged for at least 12 months. This is easiest in an area where the water level can be controlled.
Type -
Biocontrol

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
There are four agents that are used for biological control of purple loosestrife. They are two leaf feeding beetles (Galerucella calmariensis and G. pusilla), a flower weevil (Nanophyes marmoratus), and a root mining weevil (Hylobius transversovittatus). The leaf feeding beetles can reduce populations by >90% within 5 years, although the level of reduction varies by site and year. Plant size and seed production are typically greatly reduced, put plants are rarely eliminated. Competition from taller native plants can be used to reduce the loosestrife further and keep it controlled. Contact your local department of agriculture for information on permits for the release of biological control agents.
Type -
Cultivation

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Cultivation, if repeated, can provide effective control as roots that resprout are located near the soil surface. Cultivate three times a season beginning in late spring. Cultivation, however, can spread root fragments into previously uninfested areas.
Chemical controls
New (Type)IngredientsDirections
Type -
Foliar

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Active Ingredient (A.I.):
aminopyralid

Common product name:
Milestone
Rate -
(broadcast) 5 - 7 fl oz/A (0.08 - 0.1 lb a.e./A)
(spot) Equivalent to broadcast rates.

Timing -
Apply from early bloom stage to mid bloom stage.

Remarks -
14 fl oz/A can be used as long as less than half of the area is treated. Depending on the volume of solution applied per acre, typical mixtures for spot treatments are 2-8 mL Milestone per gallon of water.

Caution -
Do not apply directly to water or to areas where surface water is present. Remains in soil for up to one year depending on application rate. Overspray or drift to desirable plants should be avoided, as even minute quantities of the spray may cause severe injury to plants. Do not compost treated plants as herbicide can persist through composting process.
Type -
Foliar

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Active Ingredient (A.I.):
triclopyr

Common product name:
Garlon 4; Element 4 (Aquatic: Garlon 3A; Element 3A)
Rate -
(broadcast) 192 - 256 fl oz/A (4.5 - 6 lb a.e./A)
(spot) 1 - 2% (0.03 - 0.06 lb a.e./gal)

Timing -
Apply during the bud to mid-flowering stage.

Caution -
Use product labeled for aquatic use if potential exists for solution to contact surface waters. Use of this chemical in areas where soils are permeable, particularly where the water table is shallow, may result in groundwater contamination. Overspray or drift to desirable plants should be avoided as even minute quantities of the spray may cause severe injury to plants.
Type -
Foliar

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Active Ingredient (A.I.):
imazapyr

Common product name:
Arsenal; Stalker (Aquatic: Habitat; Imazapyr 2sl)
Rate -
(broadcast) 8 - 16 fl oz/A (0.13 - 0.25 lb a.e./A)
(spot) 0.5 - 1% (0.01 - 0.02 lb a.e./gal)

Timing -
Apply during bud to mid-flowering stage.

Caution -
Use product labeled for aquatic use if potential exists for solution to contact surface waters. Applications can result in bare ground as imazapyr is not selective and can remain in the soil for several months to over a year depending on application rate. Overspray or drift to desirable plants should be avoided, as even minute quantities of the spray may cause severe injury to plants.
Type -
Foliar

User Type -
Professional

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Active Ingredient (A.I.):
metsulfuron

Common product name:
Escort XP; Ally XP
Rate -
(broadcast) 0.5 - 1 oz/A (0.3 - 0.6 oz a.i./A)
(spot) 0.04 oz/gal (0.02 oz a.i./gal)

Timing -
Apply when target species is actively growing and fully leafed out.

Caution -
Do not apply directly to water or to areas where surface water is present. Remains in the soil for months depending on application rate. Overspray or drift to desirable plants should be avoided as even minute quantities of the spray may cause injury to plants.
Type -
Foliar

User Type -
Novice

Effectiveness -
in season
year after treatment
Active Ingredient (A.I.):
glyphosate

Common product name:
Roundup Pro; many others (Aquatic: Rodeo; AquaNeat)
Rate -
(broadcast) 2 - 3 lb a.e./A
(spot) For a 3 lb a.e./gal product. 1 - 1.5% (0.03 - 0.05 lb a.e./gal)

Timing -
Apply during early flowering stage or in the fall to regrowth. Fall treatments are the most effective, but must be made before a killing frost.

Caution -
Use product labeled for aquatic use if potential exists for solution to contact surface waters. Applications can result in bare ground as glyphosate is not selective. Overspray or drift to desirable plants should be avoided, as even minute quantities of the spray may cause severe injury to plants.