Purple loosestrife was introduced to North America in the 1800s for beekeeping, as an ornamental plant, and in discarded soil used as ballast on ships. Purple loosestrife is an invasive perennial weed that was introduced into North America in the early 1800s. Purple loosestrife has tremendous repro- ductive capacity. A clean and minimal question and answer theme for WordPress and AnsPress. Plants were brought to North America by settlers for their flower gardens, and seeds were present in the ballast holds of European ships that used soil to weigh down the vessels for stability on the ocean. Canada Thistle was introduced in the 1700s, and Musk Thistle … Purple loosestrife can be differentiated from these species by a com-bination of other characteristics. Now, about 200 years after its introduction, it has spread all over the U.S., reaching from New York all the way to California. 0. Posted. Even though less than half of Pennsylvania's wetlands are presently infested, purple loosestrife is … Purple loosestrife has flowers with 5 to 7 purple petals… Galerucella leaf beetles. It is believed that it was introduced as a contaminant in European ship ballast and as a medicinal herb for treating diarrhea, dysentery, bleeding and ulcers. Where Does Purple Loosestrife Invade? It is also cultivated as an ornamental plant in gardens, and is particularly associated with damp, poorly drained locations such as marshes, bogs and watersides. Oldest. This perennial plant prefers wetlands, stream and river banks and shallow ponds where it can displace valuable habitat for flora and fauna. People in Maryland are thinking about carefully removing them by hand and carefully placing herbicides. What is Purple Loosestrife used to treat. By the ’30s, purple loosestrife was well established along the east coast and spread inland with the construction of waterways, drainage systems, canals, railways and highways. Receive all latest updates and answers right into your inbox. Similar Species: Its opposite leaves and square stems resemble plants of the Mint Family but it is distinguished by having separate petals, a seedpod with many fine seeds, and it lacks the minty odour. Description. The flowers are showy and bright, and a number of cultivars have been selected for variation in flower colour, including: Purple Loosestrife causes bird, fish and amphibian populations to decline when their native food species and nesting sites are eliminated by the presence of this plant. Tiny five- or six-petaled flowers comprise the flower stalks. It was introduced to North America in the early 1800s as an ornamental and medicinal plant; it’s now found in 47 states and most of Canada. By the ’30s, purple loosestrife was well established along the east coast and spread inland with the construction of waterways, drainage systems, canals, railways and highways. Purple loosestrife is an invasive perennial weed that was introduced into North America in the early 1800s. It became available as an ornamental in the 1800s but has since been banned in many states. What natural enemies are approved for use against purple loosestrife? Purple loosestrife is a wetland plant native to Europe and Asia that was brought to North America in the early 19th century. Florida, Louisiana, Georgia, South Carolina, and Arizona. Back to top. Originally many garden varieties of … Purple loosestrife Lythrum salicaria Where did purple loosestrife come from? Infestations can disrupt water flow and clog up drainage systems. Seedlings quickly develop a strong taproot from which new shoots arise annually. Native to Europe and Asia, it first arrived in North America in the 1800s in ship’s ballast or via imported sheep/wool. Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria), a beautiful but aggressive invader, arrived in eastern North America in the early 1800’s. It is believed that it was introduced as a contaminant in European ship ballast and as a medicinal herb for treating diarrhea, dysentery, bleeding and ulcers. As time progresses, Purple Loosestrife effects the flow, temperature, and nutrient loads of the water, continuing to damage the necessary survival components of the flora and fauna in our wetlands.