Environmental Management

, 19:225 | Cite as

Interactions betweenLythrum salicaria and native organisms: A critical review

  • Mark G. Anderson


Seventy-one articles concerningLythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife), a European herb introduced to North America, were reviewed for evidence of utilization by North American fauna and the effect of loosestrife on native plant species. In contrast to popular claims, 29 species of organisms were found to utilize this plant, and no evidence of species declines due to purple loosestrife were found. Evidence that loosestrife out-competes cattails and other plant species was found to be lacking or contradictory. Thus detailed, quantitative data are needed to understand loosestrife's natural history, population dynamics, and impacts on native ecosystems if we are to effectively manage this plant.

Key Words

Biological invasions Native plants Lythrum salicaria Herbivory Species richness Freshwater wetlands Community structure 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark G. Anderson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Plant BiologyUniversity of New HampshireDurhamUSA

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