Help Stop Invasive Species: Missouri Invasive Plant Task Force presents Top 25 Expanding Invasive Plants list for public education during National Invasive Species Awareness Week Part I — February 22–28, 2021

February 24, 2021 | News



Help Stop Invasive Species: Missouri Invasive Plant Task Force presents Top 25 Expanding Invasive Plants list for public education during National Invasive Species Awareness Week Part I — February 22–28, 2021

Jefferson City, MO – The Missouri Invasive Plant Task Force (MoIP) released its 2021 list of Top Invasive Plants Expanding in Missouri.

“MoIP defines an ‘invasive plant’ as an aggressive, non-native species whose presence causes or is likely to cause economic or environmental harm,” says Carol Davit, chair of MoIP and executive director of the Missouri Prairie Foundation. “Not only do invasive plants impact private property, native biodiversity, and outdoor recreation such as hunting and hiking, but they also are costly to control.” Because of their vigorous expansion, the species on MoIP’s 2021 Top Invasive Plants Expanding in Missouri list are particularly important to identify and control. 

The list draws data from MoIP’s statewide assessment that was compiled and reviewed by experienced field biologists in Missouri. In addition to identifying invasive plant abundance and assessing the severity of the plants’ impact on natural communities, biologists estimated how rapidly the species’ ranges will expand to form new occurrences throughout each of Missouri’s primary ecological regions over the next 10 years. The list includes species such as Callery (Bradford) pear (Pyrus calleryana), garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolate), sericea lespedeza (Lespedeza cuneata), and invasive privets (Ligustrum spp.).

MoIP encourages land managers, property owners, outdoor recreationists, and conservation volunteers to educate themselves about how to identify and manage plants on the list. People may report observations of invasive plants in your area any time using the EDDMapS app. This real-time mapping system for documenting invasive species distribution is fast, easy to use and important for early detection and rapid response to invasive species before they become unmanageable problems.

National Invasive Species Awareness Weekfocuses attentionon the long-term ecological devastation and cost of invasive species and the urgent need for their early detection and control to minimize their negative impacts. Find many resources on the identification and control of invasive plants at

# # #

The Missouri Invasive Plant Task Force (MoIP) is administered by Grow Native!—a 21-year-old native plant marketing and education program serving the lower Midwest. Grow Native! is the native plant marketing and education program of the nonprofit Missouri Prairie Foundation. For more information about MoIP, visit, email; for more on the Grow Native! program at or for more on the Missouri Prairie Foundation visit

The North American Invasive Species Management Association’s mission is to support, promote, and empower invasive species prevention and management in North America. Since 1993, NAISMA has been growing programs that bridge jurisdictional and geographic divides. In addition to organizing a variety of professional development opportunities, housing the Certified Weed Free Products program, and operating the PlayCleanGo® program, NAISMA is the lead partner on NISAW. Learn more at

Support MoIP, the Grow Native! Program, and the Missouri Prairie Foundation

Related Articles

Provide input to inform potential invasive plant sales legislation

We are inviting you to provide input on MoIP's idea for future state legislation that would cease the sale of some invasive plants. Please share this with others you think may have interest and encourage them to provide feedback. Click here to provide input.  Why are...

2023 Awards Nominations Open Now!

The period for this year's Invasive Plant Action Awards nominations is now open! Submit your nomination using this Google form. The deadline to submit nominations is June 15, 2023. Visit our Awards page to learn more. 2022 MoIP Invasive Plant Action Individual...

Interview with Andrew Turner

Interview with Andrew Turner

Missourians Making a Difference: Andrew Turner, Southeast District Roadside Manager, Missouri Department of Transportation Throughout Missouri are many individuals making significant progress in the early detection and control of invasive plants. The Missouri Invasive...