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Wavyleaf Basketgrass: A New Forest Invader in Maryland

20 Sep 2016 2:44 PM | Anonymous

Wavyleaf basketgrass, an Asian grass first discovered growing here in Patapsco Valley State Park some 25 years ago, now covers thousands of acres in Maryland and Virginia.  Ecologists fear it could become even more widespread and damaging than Japanese stiltgrass.

The leaves are compound, up to 4" long, dark bluish-green with ripples like unfolded pleats.  The plants are under 18", perennial, and have white hairs.

   



Bloom period begins in mid-July and fruiting continues well into November. Flowers open at the ends of branches; feathery white stigmas (pollen-receiving organs) are clearly visible.  Seeds are armed with a 1/2"  bristle that becomes sticky in the fall, facilitating long-distance dispersal.



Keep an eye out for this invader, and try not to spread the seeds.Help control it by reporting any place you see it using the Mid-Atlantic Early Detection Network mobile app (download from Google Play or the Apple App Store).


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