University of Florida

Weed Laboratory

The invasion into Florida by exotic plants has reached unprecedented levels.  Invasive plants pose a threat not only to agriculture, but also to the preservation of Florida’s unique natural ecosystems.  Classical biological control, combined with other tactics in an integrated approach, is often the only economically and environmentally sustainable solution to manage exotic plants once they have become firmly established.  The laboratory conducts foreign exploration for natural enemies of invasive plants in their native ranges, introduces selected candidate biological control agents, and evaluates them under highly secure laboratory conditions. Additionally, the laboratory conducts ecological studies to measure the effect of invasive plants on Florida’s environment. The information obtained from these studies will be used to make informed decisions regarding the release of biological control agents into Florida’s environment.

invasive weed

tropical soda apple