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Invasive and Non-Native Plant Species

What is an invasive non-native plant?

An invasive non-native plant species is an introduced species that has been shown to displace the native vegetation by out-competing native species. Without the factors that normally keep them under control in their native homes, invasive vegetation species overwhelm and displace existing vegetation to form dense, single-species stands that dominate and displace the natural community.

A list of the invasive status of non-native plant species in Florida can be found at the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council website. This list contains plants that should no be found in Harmony landscapes.


Prevent the spread of invasive non-native plants

By choosing to plant a garden with native plants, you will prevent the spread of invasive plants from your yard to other natural areas. At the same time, you conserve water, energy, time and money, as well as reduce or eliminate the need for harmful pesticides and herbicides. There are a wide variety of native plants and landscaping designs to choose from in creating the Florida yard that is the most pleasing to you.

Be on the lookout!
The below non-native plants are sometimes found in nurseries and landscapes in Central Florida.  Be sure to look for these weedy and invasive species – inform your neighbors if you see these plants within the neighborhood.  If you spot these plants at Harmony, contact the Conservation Manager, Greg Golgowski, at 407-957-7776.

Invasive species to avoid or eliminate in your yard & neighborhood:

 
Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (P. Chiocchio) Camphor Tree
Cinnamomum camphora
Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (A. Murray) Mexican Petunia
Ruellia brittoniana
 
Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (A. Murray) Arrowhead Vine
Syngonium podophyllum
Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (V. Ramey) Creeping Oxeye
Wedelia trilobata
 
Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (V. Ramey) Chinese Tallow
Sapium sebiferum

Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (A. Murray)

Tuberous Sword Fern
Nephrolepis cordifolia

 

Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasive Plants (A. Murray)

Wild Taro
Colocasia esculenta

Photo: UF Center for Aquatic and Invasice Plants (V. Ramey)

Brazilian Pepper
Schinus terebinthifloius

For more information about invasive plants in Florida, visit the Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council website.


Why should you care?*

Once invasive plants take over our native plants, the result is:

  1. Florida’s natural biodiversity is destroyed.
  2. Our native plants can eventually become permanently eliminated.
  3. The animals that use those native plants cannot make use of the non-native ones.
  4. Aquatic invasive plants can harm fish habitats.
  5. Boating, swimming, hiking and other uses can be eliminated from areas with invasive plants because they clog up areas.
  6. Costs billions of dollars to eradicate.

*This list has been adapted from http://plants.ifas.ufl.edu/node/673.

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