Wisconsin's Public Liberal Arts College

Phragmites_Giant Reed Grass


Lake Superior Research Institute

Phragmites_Giant Reed Grass

PHRAGMITES MANAGEMENT PLAN

ST. LOUIS RIVER AOC

The plan is to spray the chemical "Rodeo" on the invasive and mixed patches of Phragmites australis on the Wisconsin side of the St. Louis River Area of Concern (STRAOC) identified on the attached maps. Prior to green-up all permits needed for a controlled burn would be secured.The new shoots would be treated following these small burns.

Phragmites australis (common reed) is a perennial, wetland grass that can grow to 15' in height. While native to Wisconsin, a non-native variety is becoming widespread and is threatening the ecological health of the STRAOC.The Green Bay area in a period of less than a decade has seen acres of coastal wetlands lost to this invasive, non-native variety. It has formed dense stands which degrade wetlands and coastal areas by crowding out native plants and fish and wildlife habitat. It is thought to have been introduced to North America in the early 20th century from packing material and ballast waters on ships from Europe that contained peat and sediments which were frequently dumped in coastal marshes.

P. australis spreads rapidly due to its vigorous rhizomes which can exceed 15 feet in length, grow more than six feet per year, and readily grows into new plants when fragmented. Rhizomes broken by natural actions such as waves, or human actions such as dredging or disking quickly take root in new locations. Each seed head contains over 2,000 seeds and has been known to establish new areas of infestation. Controlling the spread of P. australis is crucial to the restoration of the native wetland plant communities that exist along the south shorelines of the STRAOC.

The herbicide we intend to use is named "Rodeo", and is labeled to be used in a wetland environment chemical. We are choosing this product as it has a shorter half-life than other chemicals, is non-toxic to aquatic organisms on an acute basis, and allows us to restore the degraded areas by replacing with native aquatic vegetation (plant plugs and seeds) within two weeks after treatment. A final treatment will occur for any returning Phragmites stumps in the fall and following spring.

RECOMMENDED TIMELINE AND ACTIVITIES:

Step 1 :  June 8 :Burn all biomass down to ashes, spread out.

Step 2:   July 31: Any new growth spray with Rodeo all patches of Phragmites.

Step 3:   August 15:Spray a second time with Rodeo to address germinating seeds.

Step 4:   August 31: Spray a third time with Rodeo to address germinating seeds

Step 5:   September 1 - 15: Seeds and plant plugs installed.Schoenoplectus tabernaemontani, Bolboschoenus fluviatilis, Carex lacustris, Carex utriculata, Carex rostrata.

Step 6:   September 15 - October 31:Hand treat with Rodeo any new shoots of Phragmites in new plantings. 

Step 7:   June 30:Spot spray on the last day available for funding of the restoration project.


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