Author: Boudine Kruger
It can be challenging to tell them apart from our indigenous species when looking for invaders, especially if you aren’t sure what you’re looking at. These invasive species won’t necessarily look out of place, ugly or dangerous. In fact, you might be shocked to learn that your favourite plant might be an invasive alien plant (IAP).
Why Is It Important to Know What Invasive Plant Species Look Like?
With the appearance of invasive species in South African landscapes, biodiversity is at risk of rapid decline. If these invasions are detected and stopped before they become too prevalent, they will be easier to control and eradicate.
The sooner these invaders are eradicated, the less damage they can do to the environment around them. By improving the general awareness and recognition of IAPs, we can improve the efficiency of our eradication campaign before they become widespread in new areas.
How Can I Help Get Rid Of These Invasive Plants?
There are many ways that you can help to fight invasive species in your area, but the best way by far is by preventing them from invading in the first place. Most of the time when these plants are introduced into a new area, it is not through malice but rather through a lack of awareness. Once you know what to look out for, you can help stop the spread of these species by following these easy guidelines:
- Ensure that the plants you buy for your garden are indigenous. You can also remove and replace existing aliens in your garden with some local plant alternatives.
- Ensure to dispose of any IAPs you may have removed from your garden properly to prevent them from spreading.
- Clean your shoes after hiking through densely vegetated areas, especially if you know that this area is known for having IAPs.
- Get in touch with organisations such as the GCBR to get more information about IAPs, to make them aware of new invasions
- Share your knowledge of IAPs with the world around you. The more awareness we can raise, the better our chances are of winning the fight against the alien (plant) invasion.
Where Can I Get More Information
There are many resources available to help you navigate the world of invasive plant management. This resource can help you to learn more about the different types of invasive plants that you might encounter in the GCBR area, and how to remove them: IAP Management
For more information or if you have any questions, feel free to contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org