Oxeye daisy is a perennial herbaceous species with a creeping root system and an invasive species found in disturbed fields and meadows. It out competes native plants and can carry crop diseases. Photo by Mary Ellen Harte, Bugwood.org
SANTA FE — The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) will be treating the popular East Fork Trail in the Jemez Ranger District for the highly invasive, non-native oxeye daisy Wednesday, Aug. 31, through Friday, Sept. 2.
The treatment area will be between the Las Conchas Trailhead and N.M. 4 north of the East Fork Trailhead.
The East Fork Trail will remain open, but if members of the public plan to hike in that area please be aware that crews will be spraying the herbicide Rodeo, a formulation of glyphosate registered by the Environmental Protection Agency for use in riparian and aquatic habitats. Accompanied by Forest Service staff, crews will use backpack sprayers to apply the herbicide directly onto oxeye daisy plants.
The innocuous-looking oxeye daisy is in fact an aggressive invasive species, which can regenerate from rhizome fragments and spread rapidly into meadows, woodlands and riparian areas. The oxeye daisy forms dense stands that tend to displace native vegetation. Each flower head can produce up to 200 seeds that spread by wind or animals and remain viable in the soil for several years.
Invasive plants and noxious weeds pose a threat to forest ecosystems. They typically outcompete native plants for space, water and nutrients, and if left uncontrolled they can reduce the diversity and sustainability of native plant populations and negatively impact wildlife habitat.
The environmental analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for the SFNF’s invasive plant control program was updated in 2018.