Pennsylvania bittercress (Cardamine pensylvanica) and other bittercress (Cardamine) species are among the most common and difficult-to-control weed species in container nurseries, and they have been vouched in most counties in Florida. Preemergence herbicides can provide control, but concerns over potential resistance development, environmental issues, and crop injury problems associated with herbicide use create the need for alternative weed control methods to be explored. Previous studies have shown the potential of mulch materials for controlling weeds in nurseries, but their use along with preemergence herbicides has not been extensively investigated. To compare the effects of different mulch materials and herbicides on Pennsylvania bittercress control, a full factorial designed greenhouse study was conducted. Three mulch treatments including no mulch, pine (Pinus sp.) bark, and rice (Oryza sativa) hulls were evaluated with three herbicide treatments, including water (i.e., no herbicide), isoxaben, and prodiamine applied at label rates. Twenty-five seeds of Pennsylvania bittercress were sown on the surface of each container and emergence (percent), coverage (square centimeters), seedhead number, and biomass (grams) were measured. The results showed that Pennsylvania bittercress in containers mulched with rice hulls had the lowest emergence throughout the experiment. For coverage, seedhead, and biomass parameters, Pennsylvania bittercress seeded in rice hulls treatments had significantly lower coverage, fewer seedheads, and lower biomass compared with those in nonmulched or pine bark treatments, regardless of herbicide treatment. With isoxaben and the water check, nonmulched treatments had the highest coverage/seedhead/biomass, whereas with prodiamine, Pennsylvania bittercress in pine bark mulched containers had the highest coverage/seedhead/biomass. In conclusion, applying rice hulls alone can provide better Pennsylvania bittercress control compared with isoxaben or prodiamine applied alone.
Plant invasions pose a serious threat to biodiversity, agricultural production, and land value throughout the world. Due to Florida’s unique climate, population expansion, expansive coastline, and number of seaports, the state is especially vulnerable to non-native plant naturalization and spread. Invasive plant management programs were shown to have higher success rates with fewer resources when invasives were managed soon after non-native plants were observed. However, some newly emerging invasive plants may go undetected due to their resemblance with native species or other invasive plants. The objective of this review is to highlight a few key invasive plants in Florida that have native lookalikes. While morphological differences are discussed, the primary goal is to discuss management implications of misidentification and delayed response times, as well as the need for plant identification guides that include information on how to distinguish problematic invasive plants from similar native species.