Indian weeds are good

Martin Bachmann, René Wördehoff, Klaus Lamatsch, Alfred Wörle and Christian Ammer
Indian balsam in the forest - weeds will die - LWF-aktuell 73

If the Indian balsam is mowed or torn up in their immediate vicinity, the forest regeneration - like existing birch natural regeneration, but also planted spruce and fir trees - does not show any improved growth reactions. After three years of observation, the corresponding experiments in Wasserburg and on the Irschenberg were discontinued, since the Indian balsam no longer occurs significantly under tree regeneration.

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Indian balsam - beautiful, but ecologically questionable. International experts count the Indian balsam to the 100 most invasive, non-native species in Europe. Photo: M. Mößnang

Each of the up to 2.5 meters tall annual plants of the Indian balsam (Impatiens glandulifera, also called Glandular balsam) hurls 1,600 to 4,300 floating seeds over a distance of up to seven meters. Children are happy about the tingling sensation on their fingers when triggered and beekeepers are happy about the pollen or nectar production from Indian balsam, even if the quality and quantity are not sufficient in terms of yield or as full food (especially as autumn costume).

The decorative pink flowers were already imported and cultivated in European gardens in the first half of the 19th century and gave the Indian balsam the name "poor man's orchid".

The Indian balsam presents itself in a completely different way in the perception of nature conservation and the "forest farmers". International experts count the Indian balsam to the 100 most invasive, non-native species in Europe. The emergence of natural hybrids in the native flora is a major concern.

read more ... Indian balsam in the forest - weeds will die - LWF-aktuell 73

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