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Georgia Exotic Pest Plant Council

List of Non-native Invasive Plants in Georgia


Georgia EPPC Invasive Plant List Purpose

The purpose of the Georgia EPPC Invasive Plant List is to identify and categorize plants that pose threats to natural areas in Georgia. Natural areas are those areas that are managed to conserve or restore the native plant communities. For this list, invasive plants do not include plants that are only problems in agricultural or pastoral systems. The list does not have regulatory authority; it is intended to aid in land management decisions and increase public awareness of invasive species.

Invasive Plant Definition

Invasive species is defined as any species, including its seeds, spores or other biological material capable of propagating that species, that is not native to that ecosystem; and whose introduction does or is likely to cause environmental harm. Political boundaries are not used when determining a species nativity. Instead a species is defined as being exotic when it is not native to a particular ecosystem, making it possible to have a species that is native to parts of Georgia, but considered invasive in others.

List Description

The invasive plant list is separated into 4 categories, with one subcategory (see category definitions below). Species were ranked by EPPC members with input from other professionals and land managers. Detailed distribution information does not exist for many of these species, making it difficult to use demonstrable distribution data as a criterion for ranking a species. Efforts are underway to collect this distribution data and future revisions of the Georgia EPPC Invasive Species List will incorporate the data.

Category 1 - Exotic plant that is a serious problem in Georgia natural areas by extensively invading native plant communities and displacing native species.

Category 1 Alert - Exotic plant that is a not yet a serious problem in Georgia natural areas, but that has significant potential to become a serious problem.

Category 2 - Exotic plant that is a moderate problem in Georgia natural areas through invading native plant communities and displacing native species, but to a lesser degree than category 1 species.

Category 3 - Exotic plant that is a minor problem in Georgia natural areas, or is not yet known to be a problem in Georgia but is known to be a problem in adjacent states.

Category 4 - Exotic plant that is naturalized in Georgia but generally does not pose a problem in Georgia natural areas or a potentially invasive plant in need of additional information to determine its true status.


Subject Name Scientific Name Growth Habit EPPC Rank
Japanese chaff flower Achyranthes japonica (Miq.) Nakai Forbs/Herbs 1 Alert
tree-of-heaven Ailanthus altissima (P. Mill.) Swingle Hardwood Trees 1
chocolate vine Akebia quinata (Houtt.) Dcne. Vines 4
mimosa Albizia julibrissin Durazz. Hardwood Trees 1
garlic mustard Alliaria petiolata (Bieb.) Cavara & Grande Forbs/Herbs 1 Alert
wild garlic Allium vineale L. Forbs/Herbs 4
alligatorweed Alternanthera philoxeroides (Mart.) Griseb. Aquatic Plants 1
sessile joyweed Alternanthera sessilis (L.) R. Br. ex DC. Aquatic Plants 3
alyceclover Alysicarpus vaginalis (L.) DC. Forbs/Herbs 4
porcelain-berry Ampelopsis brevipedunculata (Maxim.) Trautv. Vines 3
sweet vernalgrass Anthoxanthum odoratum L. Grass or Grasslike 3
coral ardisia Ardisia crenata Sims Shrub or Subshrub 2
mugwort Artemisia vulgaris L. Forbs/Herbs 4
small carpetgrass, joint-head grass Arthraxon hispidus (Thunb.) Makino Grass or Grasslike 1 Alert
giant reed Arundo donax L. Grass or Grasslike 3
Japanese barberry Berberis thunbergii DC. Shrub or Subshrub 3
spanishneedles Bidens bipinnata L. Forbs/Herbs 4
hairy beggarticks Bidens pilosa L. Forbs/Herbs 4
rye brome Bromus secalinus L. Grass or Grasslike 4
cheatgrass Bromus tectorum L. Grass or Grasslike 4
paper-mulberry Broussonetia papyrifera (L.) L'Hér. ex Vent. Hardwood Trees 3
musk thistle Carduus nutans L. Forbs/Herbs 3
oriental bittersweet Celastrus orbiculatus Thunb. Vines 1 Alert
cornflower Centaurea cyanus L. Forbs/Herbs 3
camphortree Cinnamomum camphora (L.) J. Presl Hardwood Trees 2
bull thistle Cirsium vulgare (Savi) Ten. Forbs/Herbs 4
sweet autumn virginsbower Clematis terniflora DC Vines 3
coco yam, wild taro Colocasia esculenta (L.) Schott Forbs/Herbs 3
Benghal dayflower Commelina benghalensis L. Forbs/Herbs 4
bermudagrass Cynodon dactylon (L.) Pers Grass or Grasslike 2
Scotch broom Cytisus scoparius (L.) Link Shrub or Subshrub 4
Queen Anne's lace, wild carrot Daucus carota L. Forbs/Herbs 3
winged yam Dioscorea alata L. Vines 3
air-potato Dioscorea bulbifera L. Vines 3
Chinese yam Dioscorea polystachya Turcz. Vines 2
Brazilian waterweed Egeria densa Planch. Aquatic Plants 2
common water hyacinth Eichhornia crassipes (Mart.) Solms Aquatic Plants 1
thorny olive Elaeagnus pungens Thunb. Shrub or Subshrub 2
autumn olive Elaeagnus umbellata Thunb. Shrub or Subshrub 1
weeping lovegrass Eragrostis curvula (Schrad.) Nees Grass or Grasslike 3
winged burning bush Euonymus alatus (Thunb.) Sieb. Shrub or Subshrub 4
winter creeper Euonymus fortunei (Turcz.) Hand.-Maz. Vines 3
Japanese knotweed Fallopia japonica (Houttuyn) Ronse-Decraene Forbs/Herbs 1 Alert
giant knotweed Fallopia sachalinensis (F. Schmidt) Ronse-Decraene Forbs/Herbs 4
mulberryweed Fatoua villosa (Thunb.) Nakai Forbs/Herbs 4
tall fescue Festuca arundinacea Schreb. Grass or Grasslike 3
Chinese parasoltree Firmiana simplex (L.) W. Wight Shrub or Subshrub 4
English ivy Hedera helix L. Vines 1
tawny daylily Hemerocallis fulva (L.) L. Forbs/Herbs 3
rose of Sharon Hibiscus syriacus L. Hardwood Trees 3
hydrilla Hydrilla verticillata (L. f.) Royle Aquatic Plants 1
Chinese holly Ilex cornuta Lindl. & Paxton Hardwood Trees 4
Japanese holly Ilex crenata Thunb. Hardwood Trees 4
cogongrass Imperata cylindrica (L.) Beauv. Grass or Grasslike 1 Alert
red morning-glory Ipomoea coccinea L. Vines 4
tievine Ipomoea cordatotriloba var. cordatotriloba Dennst. Vines 4
tall morning-glory Ipomoea purpurea (L.) Roth Vines 4
smallflower morningglory Jacquemontia tamnifolia (L.) Griseb. Vines 4
Korean lespedeza Kummerowia stipulacea (Maxim.) Makino Forbs/Herbs 4
Japanese clover Kummerowia striata (Thunb.) Schindl. Forbs/Herbs 4
largeleaf lantana Lantana camara L. Shrub or Subshrub 3
shrubby lespedeza Lespedeza bicolor Turcz. Shrub or Subshrub 1
sericea lespedeza Lespedeza cuneata (Dum.-Cours.) G. Don Shrub or Subshrub 1
Thunberg lespedeza Lespedeza thunbergii (DC.) Nakai Forbs/Herbs 3
oxeye daisy Leucanthemum vulgare Lam. Forbs/Herbs 2
Japanese privet Ligustrum japonicum Thunb. Shrub or Subshrub 2
glossy privet Ligustrum lucidum W.T. Aiton Shrub or Subshrub 3
Chinese privet Ligustrum sinense Lour. Shrub or Subshrub 1
limnophila Limnophila sessiliflora (Vahl) Blume Forbs/Herbs 3
monkeygrass Liriope muscari (Dcne.) Bailey Forbs/Herbs 3
creeping liriope Liriope spicata (Thunb.) Lour. Forbs/Herbs 3
sweet breath of spring Lonicera fragrantissima Lindl. & Paxton Shrub or Subshrub 3
Japanese honeysuckle Lonicera japonica Thunb. Vines 1
Amur honeysuckle Lonicera maackii (Rupr.) Herder Shrub or Subshrub 2
Japanese climbing fern Lygodium japonicum (Thunb. ex Murr.) Sw. Vines 1
leatherleaf mahonia Mahonia bealei (Fortune) Carr. Shrub or Subshrub 3
dwarf waterclover Marsilea minuta L. Forbs/Herbs 3
chinaberry Melia azedarach L. Hardwood Trees 1
white sweetclover Melilotus albus Medikus Forbs/Herbs 3
natalgrass Melinis repens (Willd.) Zizka Grass or Grasslike 3
peppermint Mentha x piperita L. (pro sp.) Forbs/Herbs 3
Japanese stiltgrass Microstegium vimineum (Trin.) A. Camus Grass or Grasslike 1
Chinese silvergrass Miscanthus sinensis Anderss. Grass or Grasslike 2
white mulberry Morus alba L. Hardwood Trees 3
miniature beefsteakplant Mosla dianthera (Buch.-Ham. ex Roxb.) Maxim. Forbs/Herbs 3
marsh dayflower Murdannia keisak (Hassk.) Hand.-Maz. Forbs/Herbs 1
parrotfeather Myriophyllum aquaticum (Vell.) Verdc. Aquatic Plants 2
Eurasian water-milfoil Myriophyllum spicatum L. Aquatic Plants 3
brittleleaf naiad Najas minor All. Aquatic Plants 4
sacred bamboo Nandina domestica Thunb. Shrub or Subshrub 2
watercress Nasturtium officinale R. Brown Aquatic Plants 2
small broomrape Orobanche minor Smith Forbs/Herbs 4
skunk-vine Paederia foetida L. Vines 1 Alert
torpedograss Panicum repens L. Grass or Grasslike 3
bahiagrass Paspalum notatum Flueggé Grass or Grasslike 2
tussock paspalum Paspalum quadrifarium Lam. Grass or Grasslike 4
vaseygrass Paspalum urvillei Steud. Grass or Grasslike 3
princesstree Paulownia tomentosa (Thunb.) Sieb. & Zucc. ex Steud. Hardwood Trees 1
Oriental lady's thumb Persicaria longiseta (Bruijn) Kitagawa Forbs/Herbs 4
ladysthumb Persicaria maculosa S.F. Gray Forbs/Herbs 3
common reed Phragmites australis (Cavanilles) Trinius ex Steudel Grass or Grasslike 3
golden bamboo Phyllostachys aurea Carr. ex A.& C. Rivière Grass or Grasslike 2
annual bluegrass Poa annua L. Grass or Grasslike 3
Poncirus trifoliata (L.) Raf. Hardwood Trees 3
curly-leaved pondweed Potamogeton crispus L. Aquatic Plants 3
kudzu Pueraria montana var. lobata (Willd.) Maesen & S. Almeida Vines 1
scarlet firethorn Pyracantha coccinea M. Roemer Shrub or Subshrub 4
Callery pear (Bradford pear) Pyrus calleryana Decne. Hardwood Trees 3
sawtooth oak Quercus acutissima Carruthers Hardwood Trees 4
Cherokee rose Rosa laevigata Michx. Shrub or Subshrub 4
multiflora rose Rosa multiflora Thunb. Shrub or Subshrub 1
itchgrass Rottboellia cochinchinensis (Lour.) W.D. Clayton Grass or Grasslike 3
Himalayan blackberry Rubus armeniacus Focke Shrub or Subshrub 3
wine raspberry Rubus phoenicolasius Maxim. Shrub or Subshrub 4
giant salvinia Salvinia molesta D. S. Mitchell Aquatic Plants 1 Alert
purple crown-vetch Securigera varia (L.) Lassen Forbs/Herbs 3
bigpod sesbania Sesbania herbacea (P. Mill.) McVaugh Forbs/Herbs 2
red sesbania Sesbania punicea (Cav.) Benth. Shrub or Subshrub 2
bagpod Sesbania vesicaria (Jacq.) Ell. Forbs/Herbs 3
giant foxtail Setaria faberi Herrm. Grass or Grasslike 4
yellow foxtail Setaria pumila (Poir.) Roemer & J.A. Schultes Grass or Grasslike 4
green bristlegrass Setaria viridis var. viridis (L.) P. Beauv. Grass or Grasslike 4
tropical soda apple Solanum viarum Dunal Shrub or Subshrub 3
spiny sowthistle Sonchus asper (L.) Hill Forbs/Herbs 4
annual sowthistle Sonchus oleraceus L. Forbs/Herbs 4
johnsongrass Sorghum halepense (L.) Pers. Grass or Grasslike 3
Japanese spiraea Spiraea japonica L. f. Shrub or Subshrub 2
Florida betony Stachys floridana Shuttlw. ex Benth. Forbs/Herbs 3
French tamarisk Tamarix gallica L. Shrub or Subshrub 2
spreading hedgeparsley Torilis arvensis (Huds.) Link Forbs/Herbs 4
Chinese tallowtree Triadica sebifera (L.) Small Hardwood Trees 1
common mullein Verbascum thapsus L. Forbs/Herbs 4
tall vervain Verbena bonariensis L. Forbs/Herbs 4
Brazilian vervain Verbena incompta P. W. Michael Forbs/Herbs 4
tungoil tree Vernicia fordii (Hemsl.) Airy-Shaw Hardwood Trees 3
big periwinkle Vinca major L. Vines 2
common periwinkle Vinca minor L. Forbs/Herbs 2
Japanese wisteria Wisteria floribunda (Willd.) DC. Vines 4
Chinese wisteria Wisteria sinensis (Sims) DC. Vines 1