LEXINGTON, Ky. — Invasive plants have a large impact on Kentucky, destroying native habitats and escalating business costs due to their interference with the logging, fishing and tourism industries. A 2021 U.S. Department of Agriculture study estimated that invasive species have cost North America more than $26 billion per year since 2010. Globally, the estimated economic cost of invasive species has been $1.28 trillion over the past 50 years.
To arm people with the information they need to prevent further destruction, the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment and the Kentucky Invasive Plant Council will host the 2021 Kentucky Invasive Plant Conference Nov. 16. The virtual event features several university researchers and invasive plant experts from around the country. The goal is to bring a better understanding of invasive plants and their effects on the environment.
The conference will highlight three topics of conversation: commercially sold invasive species and restrictions on those sales, native alternatives to invasive plants, and new invaders.
“There are invasive plants all across the state, and they can cause quite a number of problems,” said Ellen Crocker, UK assistant professor of forest health. “They come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and can cause real problems in both our landscape and natural areas. This conference will be a great way to learn more about those and what people can do to manage them.”
The conference runs from 9 a.m.–12 p.m. EST and is free to the public. To register for the conference, visit http://www.tinyurl.com/2021KYIPC.
— Jordan Strickler, University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment