[NAFEX] autumn olive Now "Invasive plants"

John S swim_at_svc at yahoo.com
Fri Sep 11 07:21:55 EDT 2009

Donna,  I'm not sure what side of the issue you are on from this post.

I do want to observe, however, that just because a plant colonizes a disturbed area, such as the field around the house you mentioned, does not make that an invasive species in my mind.  The invasion, in my mind, occurred when the owners of the property most likely farmed the property.

Likewise, a large group of plants occurring in an area does not necessarily indicate an invasive species.  Few of us would regard a stand of oaks, for example, as evidence that oaks are invasive.


--- On Thu, 9/10/09, Kieran &/or Donna <holycow at frontiernet.net> wrote:

From: Kieran &/or Donna <holycow at frontiernet.net>
Subject: Re: [NAFEX] autumn olive
To: "Hector Black" <hblack1925 at fastmail.fm>, "North American Fruit Explorers" <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
Date: Thursday, September 10, 2009, 11:15 PM


My position on autumn olives was similar to 
Hector's till we went on a trip over the mtns to Virginia and saw whole fields 
that had been completely taken over by autumn olive.  One place looked like 
about 5 acres of autumn olive with an abandoned house in the middle, the plants 
came up to the eaves.  But still, I expect them to be a problem in degraded 
areas:  logged woods and abandoned fields.  I don't think they would 
stand up to a lot of browsing animals,  as any N fixer is going to 
have higher N content than plants around them.  We are about to find out I 
guess.  Our dogs have done a good job of keeping deer away (think there 
must be some poaching as well, as we really aren't overrun with them).  So 
for 15 years we have had no browsing or grazing on our property, and I'm tired 
of doing it all by hand.  So we got 2 fainting goats that had been on 
pasture.  It is weird to watch goats eat grass!  Out milk goats 
considered grass to be famine food.  So far the fainters have figured out 
that they like mimosa, sumac, honeysuckle and poor Mr. Blackberry.  They 
don't seem too interested in my hazels, nor have I seen one bite taken out of an 
autumn olive.  But give them time, they are just learning about real goat 
food.   Donna 
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