Two invaders are fighting a war to the death at our pond: Purple Loosestrife (Lythrom salicaria) and common Cattails (Typha latifolia). The former is an aggressive wetland plant originally from Asia and Europe, the latter an almost uncontrollable native of North America’s marshes.

Ironically, Purple Loosestrife was introduced in many parts of this country for erosion control, but now most jurisdictions consider it to be a noxious invader. One reason for the success of this purple menace is that, unlike Cattails, it sports beautiful flowers that are very attractive to bees, other pollinators, and many humans. (Brooklin, Maine)