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Invasive Weed Mile-a-Minute Risks Potential Spread in Maine

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Invasive Weed Mile-a-Minute Risks Potential Spread in Maine as Barbs Attach to Native Plants, Blocking Sunlight

(Photo : Katja Schulz / Wikimedia Commons)
The invasive weed mile-a-minute might spread throughout Maine. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Mile-a-minute is an invasive plant with barbs that adhere to native plants and block sunlight, endangering the health of native species, and is currently possibly spreading throughout Maine.

Invasive Weed Persicaria Perfoliata or Mile-a-Minute

Persicaria perfoliata (mile-a-minute), an invasive species that is native to India and eastern Asia, poses a threat to the plant life of Maine.

The plant, an annual that has a growth rate of up to six inches per day, nonetheless poses a concern over the winter since latent seeds can still sprout.

The plant uses its barbs to cling to native plants and prevent sunlight from reaching desirable plants, which causes great damage.

The Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association’s crop & conservation specialist, Caleb Goossen, stated that once it’s established in a region, it’s challenging to get rid of it.

Additionally, dealing with it would be costly.

Because Christmas tree farmers are concerned about its potential spread, the mile-a-minute weed is a problem for the state of Maine’s economy.

Nutkin Knoll Farm’s owner, Len Price, stated that they have continued to do what they have been doing for 35 years while learning new things about new plant species and how to care for them because new plants appear to be arriving regularly.

Mile-a-minute weed is so named because it can grow up to six inches a day, or 25 feet, in just six to eight weeks.

It has recognizable triangular leaves, pea-sized blue fruit spikes, and recurved barbs on the stems and leaf margins. The vine also has odd, round leaves called ocreae that grasp the stem just below each fruit spike.

Planning the Eradication of an Invasive

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry has been monitoring the invasive weed since it was first seen in Boothbay Harbor and has issued a preliminary alert.

The prompt reporting of invasive species, according to state horticulture Gary Fish, is essential to their efforts to protect Maine’s natural areas.

Fish asks anyone who sees the invasive weed to notify it.

The invasive species was seen at a private residence located in Boothbay Harbor, where the diligent landowner discovered a mile-per-minute weed plant while clearing up weeds that had accompanied freshly planted landscape plants.

The Department of Agriculture Conservation and Forestry (DACF) has put 33 plants on its “do not sell” list.

These plants are renowned for spreading quickly and hitchhiking on nursery stock.

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry has been monitoring the invasive weed since it was first seen in Boothbay Harbor and has issued a preliminary alert.

Also Read: Invasive Tree of Heaven Grove in NY to be Knocked Down Before Attracting Invasive Spotted Lanternflies 

Small populations of invasive mile-a-minute can be eliminated using mechanical or chemical approaches, but established populations are best controlled utilizing an integrated pest management (IPM) strategy that incorporates a biological control method.

Related Article: Japanese Knotweed, Rabbits, Deer, Rats: Invasive Species that Cost UK 5 Billion Dollars Yearly 


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