It took a civil war reenactment....

anntn6b(z6b TN)September 10, 2007

Many of you know of my fight to educate to slow the spread of Rose Rosette Disease. Some may even remember when we first saw it in this part of the country in a large rose garden at LMU in Harrogate TN. That rose garden is gone after major losses to RRD. The U never was willing to bushhog the multiflora in abandoned fields upwind of the garden.

I just saw pictures of a civil war reenactment at LMU that was done this weekend. All the fields are bushhogged. Including the ones with massive RRD infected R. multiflora.

So, it took a reenactment....

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Ann, that's cool. History is still important, in more ways than one. :-)

I find multiflora coming up far away from where it was planted. I have this theory about birds eating seeds from the hips and "depositing" the seeds via droppings. Looks like it takes no effort at all to get multiflora seeds to germinate in the most unlikely places, like through cracks in the sidewalk. Since I live at the family home, I know there has never been any multiflora planted there, yet there was a multiflora seedling coming up through a crack in the sidewalk. Incredible.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 6:09PM
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anntn6b(z6b TN)

When the USDA was considering encouraging farmers to plant multiflora as a substitute for barbed wire, they fed multiflora seeds to chickens and found that what came through....didn't germinate. From that the USDA decided that multiflora wouldn't be invasive.
They forgot that chickens have gizzards with small rocks for grinding up seeds; robins and bluejays and many, many other wild birds don't have gizzards.
Thus a pest was born.
In the 30s, farmers could buy starts of multiflora by the hundreds. And those hedges begat more multiflora. Birds did it, but only after farmers were encouraged to use multiflora for hedges, miners were encouraged to use multiflora to stabilize mined slopes, soil reclamation folks were encouraged to use multiflora to combat erosion and to stabilize creek banks.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 10:29PM
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dirt_yfingernails(z3-4 MN)

Interesting Ann. I didn't realize that not every bird has a gizzard. And when I was a kid we raised lots of chickens, ducks, and geese.

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 9:45AM
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