Natural Environment Pests

Invasive plants are a distinct group of weeds that occur in natural habitats. The purpose of this Pest Note is to clarify how invasive plants differ from common garden and agricultural weeds, to describe the occurrence and impact of invasives in California, to discuss how invasives can be spread through sales or movement of ornamental plants, and to identify approaches for managing invasive plants.


In most cases we think of weeds as native and non-native plants that impact crop production, either in commercial settings or in home fruit and vegetable gardens; cause health problems in livestock, pets, and humans; or are aesthetically unpleasing in turf and urban landscapes. In contrast, invasive plants are generally non-natives that infest natural ecosystems, including wildlands, rangelands, and pastures.


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