Autumn Olive advice

mama goose_gw zn6OHJuly 14, 2013

My neighbor on our south fence line has let the Autumn Olives take over his acreage. They've come up along the upper boundary of a small pond on our property, which I don't mind, as they provide cover and food for birds, and I mow between the pond and fence line, to keep them in check. Several seedlings have also come up at the edge of our yard, courtesy of the birds. I'm considering leaving them--I find them attractive, bees and birds love them, they provide a measure of privacy, and I can mow around them.

Is Autumn Olive a suitable shrub for a yard? I wouldn't go looking for them at a nursery, but there's no way that I can eradicate the source. The shrubs around the pond are dense, shading out any grass underneath them. The berries are edible, and don't seem to last long enough to make a mess, except when they fall between me and the mower seat. Are there any reasons not to have them in a yard?

Thank you.

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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

you have rather precisely defined an invasive..

the state of OH agrees with me ... see link

one extra plant IS A PROBLEM ... so get rid of as many as you can ...


Here is a link that might be useful: link

    Bookmark   July 14, 2013 at 5:50PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

Thank you, ken-adrian, that's a link I hadn't seen, although I've been looking at Youtube videos describing foraging and jelly making. Unfortunately, I can't do anything about my neighbor's 20 acres of shrubs--maybe I'll climb the fence and pick a few berries this fall.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2013 at 6:05PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Mama, once you've done some volunteer work for a nearby State or National Park to help get rid of this invasive species (and others), you'll know that it should never be planted on purpose.

Your neighbor is part of the problem.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2013 at 6:45PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

When we bought our place 19yrs ago, the neighbor kept that part of his place mowed for pasture--there were poplar and sycamore trees along the hollow, but very little brush. He's now too elderly to work at farming, his son was killed several years ago in an accident, and the neighbor is holding on to the land for his grandkids, who seem to have no interest in farming. It's sad to see both his life and his farm change so drastically.

Tomorrow I will remove the seedlings from my yard.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2013 at 7:56PM
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It is sad that he is not able to work his yard anymore and unfortunate that there is no one to help him. As you've seen, you will get new ones from his bushes regardless of what you do. But I think it is the right thing to remove all the seedlings that you find. That plant doesn't need to spread any more than it has already. My neighbor has them too and when they are in fruit, I walk down the street plucking off as many as I can reach, stuffing them into my pockets. Then I go home and dump them in the trash can!

Thank you for removing them.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2013 at 8:25AM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

Seedlings removed.

'If you can't beat em--join em' attitude adjusted.

I'll start a regimen of pruning/burning smaller branches on my property, before the fruit ripens.

I've been gutting squash vine borer grubs, and squashing squash bug eggs, nymphs, and adults. I think I've wreaked enough havoc on destructive species for today. ;)

Thank you all for the info and advice.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2013 at 4:59PM
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mama goose_gw zn6OH

You will be happy to know that all the Autumn Olive shrubs on my property, and what could be reached in the fence line, have been cut down. I enlisted my father's help, so he's actually responsible for most of the destruction. Including a 10yr old ornamental crab apple that I had planted, limbed up, and lavished with love. His excuse, "Well, it had red berries." :(

    Bookmark   October 12, 2013 at 11:36PM
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