Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Landscape - Know Your Invasive Plants: Mile-a-minute Weed

The following is information about mile-a-minute weed, an invasive weed in Delaware.

About Mile-a-minute Weed

Mile-a-minute weed (Persicaria perfoliata (L.) H. Gross, formerly Polygonum perfoliatum L.) is an annual Asian vine that invades a variety of habitats in the northeastern U.S. , including forested floodplains, streamside herbaceous wetlands, and upland forests.

Mile-a-minute weed is a prickly, branching, viney annual plant that germinates in early spring, usually in April or May in the mid-Atlantic region. Vines grow rapidly, climbing over other plants, and attain lengths of 6 meters or more. Flowers are inconspicuous, and iridescent blue berry-like achenes are produced beginning in mid-summer and continuing until the plants are killed by frost in the fall. Seeds require a cold period before germinating. Many will germinate within established mile-a-minute patches the following year, while others are spread by birds, mammals, and water. Mile-a-minute seeds can survive for up to seven years in the seed bank.

Mile-a-minute weed. Photo by Leslie J. Mehrhoff, University of Connecticut, Bugwood.org

Information from a University of Delaware website detailing research on biological control of this invasive weed. Go to the following site for more information http://ag.udel.edu/enwc/research/biocontrol/mileaminute.htm

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