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Mar 20, 2017 3:20 PM

UNH project looks at invasive plant species, forest threat

The Associated Press

DURHAM (AP) - A University of New Hampshire research project will assess the status and distribution of invasive native plant species throughout the state that pose the greatest threat to its forests.

The project "Invasive Plant Impacts on New Hampshire Forest Ecosystem Services" is led by John Gunn, research assistant professor of forest management, and a researcher with the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station.

Gunn says non-native species make up at least 30 percent by species of all plants in New England. Several already are widespread throughout the state, such as burning bush, glossy buckthorn, multiflora rose, and Japanese barberry.

Gunn says the invasive plants lead to significant financial and ecological damage to forest systems and are likely to increase in scale and severity under a warming New Hampshire climate.

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