, Volume 24, Issue 5, pp 1033-1041
Date: 15 Jan 2009

Clipping at early florescence is more efficient for controlling the invasive plant Spartina alterniflora

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Abstract

As invasive plants in different life stages have different recovery potential against devegetation operation, how to optimize the proper timing (the time for single treatment or the starting time for repeated treatments) for eliminating them becomes an important topic in the management of invasive plants. The invasive plant Spartina alterniflora was selected in this study, and it was clipped as a devegetation example to examine how important treatment timing is for increasing control efficiency. The results illustrated that by either single or repeated clipping treatments within 1 year, clipping at florescence was more efficient for controlling S. alterniflora. On the other hand, increasing clipping frequency without proper timing might not enhance control efficiency, suggesting that treatments in proper timing might reduce the clipping frequency required for a specific control target. From a management point of view, each control method has its optimal treatment timing, thus, in order to improve the control efficiency, the control programs should be ideally designed in relation to the phenology of the target plant. Besides, repeated clipping showed significantly higher control efficiency in low tidal zone than in high tidal zone, implying that habitat dependence of invasive plant control efficiency is an important issue in the management of invasive plants.