Massachusetts Proposes Ban/Phase-Out of 140+ Plants

Matt Mattus
Wed, 07 Sep 2005 19:04:26 PDT
I agree with most of what has been already stated on this subject, but I do
have some thought on this.

As thoughtful horticulturists, we must understand that as a species, we are
indeed  affecting our environment. Accepting the fact that we have the
capacity to move a tremendous amount of species around as any given time, I
believe, is of great concern.

Stating that this fact is as "natural" as species migration is of the same
logic as stating that the fact that we have created airplanes,
overpopulation and Wallmart parking lots  "Natural"behavior isn't always
wise, but they do add to the quality of our lives, often at other species'

I personally don't wish to be associated with a species that contributes to
the destruction of our planet, yet I am sitting here on a plastic computer.
Hmmmm? Oh, the irony!

But this attempt to control invasive species, I support, as do many other
horticulturists such as Dan Hinkley.

Anyway, I live in Massachusetts, in a city that has recently counted over
200,000 Norway maples planted on it's streets. Cars are green with pollen in
the spring and allergies are rampant. Lythrum salicaria has invaded our
wetlands at a rate that mimics the invasion of Phragmites. Waterfowl are
forced to find new breeding areas and populations of leapard frogs are gone.

Simply, I feel that the few species covered in this act are not considered
extreme measures. They are indeed invaseve. I counted over thirty Berberis
seedling in our back woods, I feel that we should all be concerned and not
cavalier about invasive species. We are more informed now as to the risks,
if we are the smarter species, let's start acting like it.

Matt Mattus
Worcester, Massachusetts

On 9/7/05 1:23 PM, "Dennis Kramb" <> wrote:

> This is a very philosophical issue, and one that I enjoy immensely.  I
> don't necessarily consider these alien invasions to be unnatural.  Sure,
> humans caused them, but then humans are part of the natural environment too.
> Don't get me wrong.  I think these alien invasions can be tragic, and I
> applaud efforts to contain, control, and prevent them.  But I choose not to
> think of them in terms of humans versus nature.
> These are all natural processes.  Species have been wiping each other out
> for ages.  Humans are probably the first species with the capacity to
> understand their impact on the planet and likewise be equipped to regret &
> learn from (and consequently modify) their actions!
> This Massachusetts ban is certainly intriguing.  Banning the import of
> aggressive plants is a good first step, but now eliminating them from the
> landscape is the bigger challenge!
> Dennis in Cincinnati
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