Invasive plants are categorized as invasive because they are not native to our region. Many times, settlers brought the plants from another continent and added them to gardens and landscapes. One of the reasons that invasive species are able to succeed is that they often leave their predators and competitors behind in their native ecosystems. Without these natural checks and balances, they are able to reproduce rapidly and out-compete native species.
Why should you care?
Invasive plants often destroy the native plants that native pollinators and other animals depend on for survival.
They also degrade wildlife habitat and water quality, reduce the quality of land, increase soil erosion and reduce recreational opportunities.
How can you help?
- Plant native plants! Consider removing invasive plants you already have and replacing them with native varieties. Always research before buying plants.
- Prevent invasives from reproducing. Remove and dispose of seed heads before they mature. Do NOT compost them.
- Remove invasive plants whenever possible.
The longer we wait, the more expensive it will be to control. We are all in this together!
Visit the Midwest Invasive Plant Network comprehensive plant list HERE.
Another great resource specific to the Chicago Region listing the 32 invasive plants that are most damaging to our local ecosystem is available HERE.
Controlling invasive plants is not really hard, it requires targeted persistence. HERE is a great guide to management strategies.
Below are some invasive plant species commonly found in Barrington.