Weeds Gone Wild

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Weeds Gone Wild > Volunteer Author Information

Volunteer Author Information
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If you would like to volunteer to write a fact sheet for a particular species, please review the invasive species plant list to determine if a fact sheet already exists or is in progress. If a species is not already taken, the word "Volunteer" will appear in the Fact Sheet column. Then read the information below and e-mail Jil Swearingen (jil_swearingen@nps.gov) with the species name and your contact information.

Fact Sheet Guidelines (June 2006)

  1. The purpose of the fact sheets is to provide an overview of the most current information for the plant. The fact sheet is meant to be a good starting point for a person interested in learning about a particular invasive plant, and should be comprehensive and accurate but not overly technical.
  2. Write in language that can be understood by the lay person. Avoid technical jargon, especially when giving descriptive information. For example, when describing a plant with opposite leaves, try to use phrasinglike "leaves occur in pairs along the stem" rather than "leaves opposite".
  3. Take a national perspective (including Hawaii, Alaska, and U.S. territories) when writing about the plant's distribution, habitats, and ecological threats. For invasive distribution information, please see the WeedUS Database http://www.invasive.org/weedus/. A map using this information will be produced for the final fact sheet.
  4. Use American (inches, feet) rather than metric (millimeters and centimeters) units of measure.
  5. Provide name and address (email preferred) for at least one person that can be contacted for assistance with management and other general information the plant. Be sure to obtain prior permission. Also, please provide useful web sites when relevant.
  6. Provide name and email address of persons who would be qualified to review your fact sheet.
  7. Submit several good photographs of the plant including landscape view and close- ups of leaves, flowers, fruits, stems and seeds when useful for identification. Images in jpeg format and sent by electronic mail are preferred. One photograph is always included on the first page near the description. Other photos may be included elsewhere if appropriate. Please provide name and affiliation of photographer, and obtain copyright permission if needed. Do not send the photographs inside Word or Powerpoint document; individual electronic image files should be sent (JPG, TIFF, PNG, GIF).
  8. Please use MSWord and submit draft fact sheet by e-mail to: jil_swearingen@nps.gov. Otherwise, please call to discuss what format you will be sending in. Length should be about 3-4 pages single-spaced, using 12 font size.
  9. Refer to the web site for sample fact sheets for general content and style.
    10. Once posted to the web page, fact sheets will be updated as needed. Your assistance with this is encouraged. Please notify the APWG Chair of any additions or corrections you wish to make

Fact sheets should include the following information:

Kartesz (1994) is used as the taxonomic authority for all species names. This information is available on the WeedUS Database http://www.invasive.org/weedus/.

This information is available from the WeedUS database on the Weeds Gone Wild web page: http://www.invasive.org/weedus/.

Provide a description of the plant, including the type and form of the whole plant, average height, stems, leaves, flowers, fruits, seeds and other features necessary for identification. Provide information on similar looking plants if applicable that could be confused with the invasive species.

Summarize various ecological impacts of the plant to natural habitats and ecosystems in the U.S. Include any known or potential impacts to endangered, threatened, or rare species as well as impacts to soils, hydrology, fire regimes, etc.

Information on the invasive distribution of the plant in natural areas is available from the WeedUS Database: http://www.invasive.org/weedus/. General occurrence information without reference to invasiveness, is available through the USDA Plants Database at: http://plants.usda.gov/.

Describe natural area habitats invaded or otherwise occupied by the plant, with emphasis on its impact to natural habitats. Also mention if the plant is invasive in agricultural lands, range lands, national forests, roadways, gardens, and other areas as well.

Provide a historical account of when, where, and by what means the plant was introduced to the U.S. if known. Where available, include known uses of the plant but avoid extolling the beauty, benefits, and other positive aspects of the plant so as not to encourage its use.

Describe the longevity of the plant (annual, biennial, or perennial) and its sexual (seed) and asexual (vegetative) methods of reproduction, time of flowering and fruit production, and methods of spread including seed dispersal and spread by vegetative growth or transport of vegetative structures. Feel free to include information on associated pollinators, seed-dispersers, foragers, etc. and whenever applicable, include methods of spread by humans, machinery and other equipment.

Summarize the various control methods (biological, chemical, manual, mechanical) that are currently used and are known to be effective in controlling the plant. Use chemical name (e.g., glyphosate) first and put brand name (e.g., Roundup) in parentheses. Focus on herbicides with low toxicity and low leaching potential and information useful to homeowners as well as professionals. Provide guidance on restoration of controlled sites when possible.

"For more information on the management of (Common name), please contact..." Include name, affiliation, email address, and phone/fax, and mailing address if available and with prior permission from each person.

Suggest plants, especially native species, that are good substitutes for the invasive plant, if appropriate.

Suggest links where additional information or photos can be found for the species (i.e. invasive.org).

Name, affiliation, location (city and state), and email address.

Name, affiliation, and date if available

Standard scientific format. For example:

Johnson, A.G., and G.P. Lumis. 1979. Chemical pruning of Euonymus fortunei 'Colorata' with dikegulac-sodium reduced shoot elongation, lateral branching. Horticultural Science 14(5):626-627.


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Last updated: 30-Dec-2008