Although most non-native plants do not become invasive, millions of dollars are spent each year in California to control and mitigate the damage done by invasives. Many of these problem plants entered agricultural and wild lands from our own gardens. Among the culprits are fountain grass, periwinkle or vinca, English and Algerian ivy, French and Spanish broom and pampas grass. According to the Nature Conservancy the state of California spends more than $84 milion on controlling invasive plants annually.
It is not always possible to know which non-native plants will become invasive weeds. In fact, years can pass before an exotic starts to muscle its way into open space. Educate yourself on which plants to avoid by visiting the California Invasive Plant Council’s (Ca-IPC) informative website (http://www.cal-ipc.org/ ). Do your part to help by gardening with beautiful and interesting native plants. With over 5,000 species to choose from, there is an appropriate plant for every gardening situation.