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Knox county working on invasive species ordinance

Knox county working on invasive species ordinance

Posted: May 14, 2018 7:57 PM

VINCENNES, Ind. (WTHI) - They may not look like much, but some plants are causing health and economic problems in Knox County. County officials are now trying to find a solution.

Invasive plants are non-native plants that are harmful to their environment. Knox County officials say that an influx is causing health and economic issues. These issues include an increase in tick population and destruction of some farmland.

That's why a new ordinance is being introduced. If passed, it will ban invasive plants from being sold or distributed in the county.

Will Drews with the Knox County Soil and Water Conservation District says it's all about keeping balance in our environment.
Drews explains, "In order to keep these really important systems intact. We need them to be functioning properly. And the problem is, when we have what we call the plant bullies, these invasive plants come in. They change the way that these ecosystems are functioning."

Drews stresses the ordinance would not be retroactive, meaning if you have an invasive plant you will not have to remove it. If passed, it will be the first ordinance of it's kind in the State of Indiana.

Top Ten Invasive Plants in Knox County
1. Asian Bush Honeysuckles (Lonicera tatarica, L. maackii, L. x bella, & L. morrowii)
2. Japanese Honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica)
3. Wintercreeper (Euonymous fortunei)
4. Poison Hemlock (Conium maculatum)
5. Autumn Olive (Elaeagnus umbellata)
6. Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora)
7. Tree of Heaven (Ailanthus altissima)
8. Non-native Thistles (Musk, Bull, and Canada) (Carduus nutans, Cirsium vulgare, & C. arvense)
9. Johnson Grass (Sorghum halepense)
10. Burning Bush (Euonymous alatus)

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