Sunday, September 22, 2013

KISMA to offer information, control demonstration about invasive Japanese knotweed Sept. 24

HOUGHTON -- The The Keweenaw Invasive Species Management Area (KISMA) will sponsor a talk and a control demonstration about invasive Japanese knotweed on Tuesday, Sept. 24, in Houghton. The two events are free and open to the public.

Japanese knotweed is an extremely invasive, bamboo-like plant growing here in the Copper Country. (Photo © and courtesy Tom Heutte, USDA Forest Service,

Japanese knotweed and its relative, giant knotweed, are extremely invasive bamboo-like plants that occur in the Copper Country in Houghton/Hancock, on US 41 just south of Houghton, Calumet/Laurium, L'Anse, Lake Linden, and elsewhere in the Keweenaw. They are capable of pushing their way under streets and through pavement, as has happened in Bayfield, Wisconsin. They can also damage parking lots, sidewalks and foundations, resulting in extremely high repair costs. After escaping from yards and gardens, these out-of-place plants can quickly become an invasive pest in natural areas forming dense stands that limit other plants from growing among their crowded stems.

Close-up view of invasive Japanese knotwood. (Photo © and courtesy Tom Heutte, USDA Forest Service,

A Japanese/giant knotweed information session will be held from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 24, in the Lakeshore Center's (old UPPCO Building) Community Room. Featured is guest speaker Pam Roberts, coordinator of Northwoods Cooperative Weed Management Area in Bayfield, who will highlight their group's work with knotweed education and control in northern Wisconsin.

Following the info session, a control demonstration will be held from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. in Michigan Tech's parking lots 21/26, located on the east side of Garnet Street, just south of Seventh Avenue. Ian Shackleford, Ottawa National Forest botanist and invasive species specialist, will demonstrate various control methods for knotweed. Pam Roberts and Bonnie Hay, Gratiot Lake Conservancy executive director, will share their experiences with knotweed control.*

This map shows the locations of the Japanese knotweed information session at the Lakeshore Center and the control demonstration that will follow in Michigan Tech's parking lots 21/26. (Map courtesy Janet Marr)

If you have any questions, feel free to contact Janet Marr, KISMA coordinator, at 906-337-5529 or email or Sue Haralson, Houghton Keweenaw Conservation District administrator, at 906-369-3400 or email

KISMA's Mission: The Keweenaw Invasive Species Management Area's mission is to facilitate cooperation among federal, state, tribal, and local groups in prevention and management of invasive species across land ownership boundaries within Baraga, Houghton, and Keweenaw Counties.

KISMA is funded by a Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) grant provided by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through an agreement between the Houghton Keweenaw Conservation District and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Ottawa National Forest.

* Click here to learn more about Japanese knotweed and see more photographs.

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