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Relationship between invasive plants, fire subject of new report

The relationship between fire and invasive plant species is complex, to say the least. On the one hand, fire, like other disturbances, can create conditions that promote population explosions of invasive plants, so-named because they are both nonnative and potentially harmful to the ecosystems they inhabit. On the other, fire can be a management tool that curtails invasive plant growth.

A new general technical report published by the USDA Forest Services Pacific Northwest Research Station explores this dynamic by summarizing completed and ongoing research conducted as part of the Joint Fire Science Program (JFSP). Titled Invasive Plant Species and the Joint Fire Science Program, the publication is organized around four questions:

  • What factors influence community susceptibility to invasion by nonnative species after fire?
  • How do fuel reduction treatments affect invasives?
  • How do plant invasions affect fire regimes?
  • What are effective mitigation strategies against invasive plants?

An electronic copy of the publication is available online at Printed copies will be available December 9.


Contact: Yasmeen Sands
USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Research Station

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