Garlic Mustard in the U.S.A.

robert thorn thorn.5 at
Mon May 12 11:03:47 EDT 1997

>Yes, this is the European mustard.  I have no idea how long it has been in
>North America, but long enough to become an aggressive herbaceous dominant in
>mesic forests thoughout the eastern US.  Most peaple here worry about it
>because is can completely shade-out native spring wildflowers.  It has the
>capacity to completly alter our native forests here
>John Shuey

It seems to already be doing so, particularly in fragmented suburban/rural
edge forests.  I've been surveying parks around Columbus here, and it is
far and away the dominant flowering herb in small forests and riparian
areas.  The latter seem to be especially impacted: their higher flood
benches are nearly a monoculture of Alliaria.  With some wind dispersal,
the edges of these small forest tracts offer easy access to the shady,
moist sites favored by this species.  And the irregular flooding in
riparian areas creates conditions even more favorable for such a
disturbance-favoring plant.  Is there anything that eats it, other than P.
                                Rob Thorn, thorn.5 at

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