For Immediate Release – October 19, 2023
Lina Swislocki, Invasive Plant Program Assistant Coordinator
Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation
Invasive Mile-a-Minute Weed Confirmed in Vermont
Charlotte, VT The Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation, the Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets, and the Fish and Wildlife Department have officially confirmed the first documented presence of mile-a-minute weed (Persicaria perfoliata) in Chittenden County, Vermont.
The fast-growing annual vine, originally from India and Eastern Asia, poses a significant threat to native vegetation, young forest stands, habitats in natural areas, and agricultural industries such as nurseries, landscaping, and Christmas tree farms.
Mile-a-minute, introduced to the United States through contaminated nursery stock in the 1930s, has been reported in various regions, including Maine, Southern New England, the Mid-Atlantic, Oregon, and British Columbia (Canada).
This vine is identifiable by its distinctive triangular leaves and iridescent blue fruits, reproducing through seeds and spreading easily via animals, the nursery trade, and waterways. Its rapid growth, up to six inches per day, leads to the formation of dense mats that smother neighboring plants, causing stress, weakening, and eventually killing the overtopped plant.
Mile-a-minute weed has only been confirmed at this single site in Chittenden County, and it remains uncertain whether other populations exist within Vermont. The infestation consisted of a minimal amount of plant material, restricted to one specific area. Upon removal from the site, the plant material was contained within a single garbage bag, and no additional vines were discovered on the property or reported elsewhere.
Residents are encouraged to be vigilant in looking for this plant and promptly report any sightings to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additional information about this invasive plant can be found at Vermont Invasives.