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Michigan's Invasive Species Community

Japanese Knotweed Season 2017

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I'll try to be better about updating things here this season. Crazy busy in my personal life and all this knotweed stuff is done in my "free time". I've been honored to speak for a couple CISMA events in Mid and Southwest Michigan over the winter. I'm trying to keep up with developments in the United Kingdom and share them on my Facebook page, but even that has fallen behind. Still, some exciting finds I'll share in this post and as I discover them!

In other awesome news, I've been selected to take the message of the coming "Day of the Knoweed" to the American Public Works Association National Public Works Conference in August! Knotweed will have a National platform and hopefully put the Michigan Network(s) on the map!

So now I'm going to need as much help as possible hearing what cities in Michigan and other states are doing to spread awareness and NOT spread the plant. Please send me pictures of local damage I can share!

I will be echoing the call for a NATIONAL awareness and response, and sharing the containment information from the UK, that you can find here:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/prevent-japanese-knotweed-from-spreading (Cut and dry basics)

http://www.nonnativespecies.org/downloadDocument.cfm?id=109  (you'll have to scroll past the "changes" to get to the "pretty" stuff ;)

http://www.cornwallknotweed.org.uk/media/3638576/identification-final.pdf (So pretty!)

http://www.cornwallknotweed.org.uk/environment-and-planning/trees-hedges-and-woodland/invasive-plants/japanese-knotweed/ (The Hub of great, proven, acclaimed information. Click around!)

There's also been a ground-breaking case of a court ruling AGAINST the Railroad in a Japanese knotweed case. It's expected that the Railroad will appeal, but it's HUGE because it sets the precedent for thousands of affected landowners in the UK who have land touching 'superpowers' like Railroad and City/Council property infested with knotweed. I wouldn't spread this information around too much, but just be aware that this could change things even over here. Here is the legal framework for how/why the case has (so far) turned out the way it has. http://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=69332368-0417-4a0b-a149-812c43bea324 

Also worth knowing, this company is exploring using electricity to boil the water inside the plant...  http://www.producebusinessuk.com/purchasing/stories/2017/01/25/sustainable-and-eco-friendly-ways-to-deal-with-weeds

I'm starting to encourage participants to form action groups, contacting their local representatives and people they know in research universities to see who might already be doing research on knotweed in Michigan. At the very least, it gets the name "Japanese knotweed" out there.

Happy 2017 season! 


April 5 2017 DW Portage.jpg

April 10 2017 DW Portage MI.jpg

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  • 2 months later...

So far this year I've been contacted at my city job by more people than last year, TOTAL, and a lot of them are sounding desperate and wore out. The knotweed IS spreading.


Some of us are trying to put together a knotweed conference, so I'll start a new thread for it. But I still insist that knotweed can be your vehicle to reach people about invasive species across the board. It hits people in their pocket books, it got here because it was 'pretty', and people are moving it without knowing. Perfect examples :)

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