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«6.4.2015 Andreas Gigon, Institute of Integrative Biology Swiss Federal Institute of Technology ETH Zurich, Switzerland Trachycarpus fortunei, Chinese ...»

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NB The typical evergreen Mediterranean tree and shrub species have much more sclerophyllous (hard) leaves and are competitive only where the summer is much hotter and drier, and the winter mild and moist.

6 Factor nr 4: Climate change A simple comparison of the annual climate averages of the period 1961-1990 to those of 1981-2010 for Locarno Monti shows the following: temperature increased from 11.5 to 12.4 oC, the number of days with temperature 0oC decreased from 35.4 to 30.1, and the annual precipitation increased only slightly from 1843 to 1897 mm (MeteoSchweiz 2012). Since many neophytes originate from (sub)tropical regions, these changes have very probably enhanced the spreading of laurophyll species.

Factor nr 5: Land abandonment Starting in the 1950ies, mass tourism increased very rapidly in the Lake region of Southern Switzerland, leading to a decrease of agriculture. Abandoned areas near gardens and parks were thus often used to deposit garden waste, and could also be directly invaded by neophytes because the latter were not controlled any more. An example: According to Peter Voser (pers. communication), old photographs show that above the village of Solduno the land was terraced for vineyards; at present it is covered by forest. Here he found a large neophytic Ailanthus altissima that had germinated in the 1950ies, according to the counting of the tree rings.

4 Control and elimination of the neophytes?

Monitoring and preventing the further spread are the first steps in dealing with neophytes.

In contrast to the spread of environmental pollutants, in neophytes with clonal growth (runners, rooting shoots or rhizomes), there is no “dilution” from the source (= first appearance) to the margins of the “contaminated” area; thus, the area covered by a clonally growing neophyte often increases exponentially.

Psychologically, it important to not simply prohibit invasive neophytes for gardens, but to propose “harmless” indigenous alternatives e.g. Angelica sylvestris (Wild A., Engelwurz) instead of the skin injuries provoking neophyte Heracleum mantegazzianum (Gigon 2007, BfN 2013 Invasive Pflanzen) The non-invasive neophytes are defined as those causing no major problem, thus no control measures are required. However, monitoring these species is necessary, because some of them may cause problems in the future, e.g. due to climate warming or due to changes in their genetic structure. Some of these neophytes are very attractive e.g. Hemerocallis fulva (Orange Daylily, Gelbrote Taglilie) and Agave americana.

Thus, there is no reason to proclaim a general “war” against all neophytes.

One may even view the occurrence of neophytes as an expression of the vitality of Nature.

The invasive neophytes are defined as plant species that cause problems (see Introduction). In Switzerland, 18 invasive neophytes are listed in the Freisetzungsverordung (2014), a legal regulation that prohibits their further selling and planting.

Species that affect human health must be controlled and, if possible, eliminated. An example is the North American Ambrosia artemisiifolia (Ragweed, Ambrosia) that can cause heavy respiratory and other allergies. The Caucasian Heracleum mantegazzianum (Giant Hogweed, Riesen-Bärenklau) causes allergic skin injuries. Both species have ± successfully been controlled in Switzerland.

For the neophytes that affect or damage biodiversity the situation in situ has to be assessed in detail.

If a damage of local biodiversity or of endangered species occurs or may occur in the future, control measures have to be undertaken. An example is the spread of Solidago gigantea (Giant Goldenrod, Spätblühende Goldrute) in wet grasslands of high conservation value, or the spread of Pueraria lobata (Kudzu) in a site with the rare Cistus salviifolius (Sage-leaved Rockrose, Zistrose) near Ascona.

If a damage to agriculture, forestry or infrastructure (roads, buildings etc.) occurs or may occur in the future, control measures have to be undertaken. This is the case for the South-African Senecio inaequidens (Narrow.leawed Ragwort, Südafrikanisches Greiskraut) that is very toxic for livestock and presently spreads very quickly in Switzerland. Also Reynoutria japonica spreads enormously along rivers and in other habitats indirectly causing erosion and other problems. Pueraria lobata locally 7 overgrows gardens, agricultural areas and roads (e.g. near Ronco/Ascona): local control measures for both species are necessary. This is also the case for Ailanthus altissima e.g. near Solduno.

The control or elimination methods for the invasive neophytes vary from species to species. In some, eradication (or mowing 3-5x/year) can lead to a strong decimation if applied for several years, e.g. with Heracleum mantegazzianum, Impatiens glandulifera and I. balfourii. For most invasives, the control is very costly (Nentwig {2010} mentions 0.6-14 Mio. €/yr for Germany) and in some cases almost impossible even with herbicides (their application requires an official permit). For Pueraria lobata and for Reynoutria spp even annual mowing 3-5 times for three years or the application of herbicides like Roundup for 3 years does not lead to a complete elimination (Buholzer et al. 2015).

According to Nentwig (2010), in Germany, the costs of the damage (and of the control) of the Reynoutria amounts to 32 Mio. €/yr. A complete elimination is only possible with careful eradication.

This and also the mowing are very costly, also because the plant material and the contaminated soil must be treated in a professional compost fermentation plant, respectively completely burnt, because from shoots and roots new plants can develop (infoflora 2014a).

5 Two important neozoon and a neomycete species in Southern Switzerland

The Sweet Chestnut Gall Wasp, Edelkastanien-Gallwespe, Dryocosmus kuriphilus is an invasive neozoon from China causing great damage to Sweet Chestnut trees (Castanea sativa, Edelkastanie) in many parts of the world, e.g. since 2002 in Piemonte (Italy) and since 2009 in S Switzerland, where it disperses quickly (with wind drift 10-20 km/year). The insect is 2-3 mm long and deposits its eggs in the buds, leading to the formation of galls. The leaves become malformed, the tree crowns become scanty, and the production of “marroni” breaks down. Furthermore, the forest cannot prevent soil erosion any more. In Italy, promising biological control measures with the parasitic wasp Torymus sinensis from China are under way, a species that has already immigrated to Switzerland.

See www.bafu.admin.ch/publikationen/publikation/01666/index.html?lang=de from where the pictures are taken.

Asian Tiger Mosquito, Asiatische Tigermücke, Stegomyia albopicta (Aedes albopictus) is an invasive neozoon from Southeast Asia transmitting the Chikingunya and the Dengue fever to humans (the latter up till present not yet in Switzerland). With the transport of goods and with tourism it spread world wide, since 2003 very rapidly also in S-Switzerland. Here, a large control scheme has been implemented, with special traps and in particular cases also with insecticides.

www.bafu.admin.ch/tiere/09262/09441/index.html?lang=de 8 Chestnut blight or cancer, Kastanien-Rindenkrebs, Cryphonectria parasitica (Endothia p.) is a neomycetes belonging to the Ascomycota fungi originating from East Asia and parasitizing on Sweet Chestnut (Castanea sativa). In North America, it completely wiped out the indigenous Castanea dentata forests. In Europe, the Castanea sativa forests were heavily damaged since the 1950ies, but showed some resistance, particularly in the regrowth from stumps. Even some completely resistant strains could be bread. The fungus kills the cambium beneath the bark and slowly forms a cancer that eventually girdles the tree. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chestnut_blight

5 References (not all cited in the guide)

BfN 2013. Invasive Pflanzen im Garten. Empfehlungen zum Schutz der biol. Vielfalt. www.neobiota.de/publikationen.html Buholzer S, Pron S, Gigon A (2015) Die Bekämpfung von Kudzu (Pueraria lobata). Die im Südtessin invasive asiatische Liane lässt sich mit Mahd und Herbiziden eindämmen. ART Bericht…. (anche in italiano, aussi en français)

Crooks JA, Soulé ME (1999) Lag times in population explosions of invasive species: Causes and implications. 103-125 in:

Sandlund OT, Schei PJ, Viken A (eds.) Invasive species and biodiversity management. Kluwer, Dordrecht NL.

Gigon A (2007) Anstelle von invasiven Neophyten wähle man... Ersatz-Pflanzenarten für die unerwünschten gebietsfremden Arten. Der Gartenbau 24, 2-5 bzw. 10-13. www.infoflora.ch/de/flora/neophyten/ Infomaterial Gigon A, Klingenstein F, Rabitsch W, Essl F, (2008) Schweiz, Deutschland, Österreich; Gemeinsam gegen invasive gebietsfremde Arten. Natur und Landschaft 9/10: 429-433.

Gigon, A, Pron, S, Buholzer S (2014) Ecology and distribution of the Southeast Asian invasive liana Kudzu, Pueraria lobata (Fabaceae), in Southern Switzerland. Bulletin OEPPO/EPPO Bulletin 44(3): 490-501.

Kowarik I (2010) Biologische Invasionen: Neophyten und Neozoen in Mitteleuropa. 2nd ed. Ulmer, Stuttgart.

Lauber K, Wagner G, Gygax A (2012) Flora Helvetica. 5th ed. Haupt, Bern.

MeteoSchweiz (2012) Diagrammi e valori normali del clima di diverse stazioni svizzere. Lugano.


MeteoSvizzera (2012) Rapporto sul clima – Cantone Ticino 2012, rapporto di lavoro MeteoSvizzera 39:1-63.

Nentwig W (2010) Invasive Arten. UTB-Taschenbuch, Haupt, Bern. 128 pp.

Schoenenberger N, Röthlisberger J, Carraro G (2014) La flora esotica del Cantone Ticino (Svizzera). Bolletino della Società ticinese di scienze naturali 102:13-30. (English summary) Schröter C (1936) Flora des Südens. Rascher, Zürich.

Schröter C (1956) Flora des Südens. 2. Aufl. neu bearb. von E. Schmid. Rascher, Zürich.

Walter H, Lieth H (1960-1967) Klimadiagramm-Weltatlas. Jena.

Walther GR (2000) Laurophyllisation in Switzerland. Dissertation, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich.

Walther GR, Gritti ES, Berger S, Hickler T, Tang Z, Sykes MT (2007) Palms tracking climate change. Global Ecol Biogeogr 16:801-809.

Weber E (2003) Invasive plant species of the world: a reference guide to environmental weeds. CABI, Wallingford UK.

Weber E (2013) Invasive Pflanzen der Schweiz erkennen und bekämpfen. Haupt, Bern, 224 pp.

Internet sites DAISIE (2014) Delivering Alien Invasive Species Inventories for Europe. http://www.europe-aliens.org/ EPPO (2014) EPPO Lists of invasive alien plants. http://www.eppo.int/INVASIVE_PLANTS/ias_lists.htm#IAPList Freisetzungsverordung (2014) http://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classified-compilation/20062651/index.html Info flora (2014a) Neophyten. http://www.infoflora.ch/de/flora/neophyten/. (aufgerufen am 24.1.2015) Info flora (2014b) Artenlisten. http://www.infoflora.ch/de/daten-beziehen/artenliste-5x5-km.html (aufgerufen am 24.1.15) www.infoflora.ch/de/daten-beziehen/artenliste-5x5-km.html. Species lists of the 5 km x 5 km plots 700/110 and 700/115.

ISSG (2013) Invasive Species Specialist Group www.issg.org Most of the figures are from the internet.

Evergreen laurophyllous neophytic trees (T), shrubs (S) and lianas (L) at 600 m near Lake Maggiore (Locarno) and Lake Lugano. SL = Schwarze=Black Liste, WL = Watch Liste 9

–  –  –

Erigeron karvinskianus Hemerocallis fulva Phytolacca americana Mexican Fleabane, Karvinski Berufkraut Orange Daylily, Gelbrote Taglilie Amer. Pokewee, Am. Kermesbeere Asteraceae. Latin America w Xanthorrhoeaceae. East Asia r Phytolaccaceae. N America b WL Reynoutria japonica Japanese Knotweed, Japan. Staudenknöterich Polygonaceae. East Asia. r SL

–  –  –

B: Alliaria petiolata Garlic A (F): Mirabilis jalapa B: Oenothera biennis s.l.

Mustard, Knoblauchhederich Beauty of the Night, Wunderblume Evening Primrose, Nachtkerze Brassicaceae. Europe.

Nyctaginaceae. Mexico Onagraceae. North America w Invasive neophyte in NE USA

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