Invasive Non-native Plants

invasive musk thistlePlants introduced by human activities to areas where they do not naturally occur are termed "non-native" species. When a non-native plant escapes from where it was planted and invades native plant communities, it is termed "invasive."


Invasive non-native plants displace native plants and can reduce the ability of the plant community to support native fish and wildlife, protect the soil, and filter pollutants from soil and water.

When these plants were first introduced to an area, no one knew that they would become invasive or undesirable. It was only after several years (in some cases, decades), that the extent of the damage was realized.

invasive purple loosestrife

Some plants in this section are regulated under state law as noxious weeds or prohibited exotic species and are identified as such. Others continue to be sold because of their horticultural value in gardening and landscaping.




The DNR discourages use of the following plants. They are likely to spread and displace native species.

Trees and Shrubs

Grasses and Wildflowers

Back to top