Exotic Plant Management Team

The Exotic Plant Management Team
The Exotic Plant Management Team from a training in the spring of 2015.


The Alaska Exotic Plant Management Team (EPMT) provides invasive plant management assistance to each of the 16 parks in Alaska, covering over 52 million acres of pristine natural areas and wilderness, including coastal fjords, glacial valleys, tundra, and boreal forests. The majority of parks in Alaska contain healthy, intact native ecosystems with very low levels of infestation by invasive plants.

Each season, field employees work across Alaskan parks, mapping thousands of invasive plant infestations, eradicating small patches, and organizing volunteer events to control larger ones. The EPMT program provides many benefits to Alaska beyond its parklands. EPMTs work successfully with landowners near each park to foster local invasive plant management. The EPMT program contributed to the first examinations of the wildfire-invasive plant connection in Alaska. In cooperation with the US Forest Service and the Alaska Natural Heritage Program, over 100 species were systematically ranked for their invasiveness threat and workshops were provided for their identification. Altogether, the Alaska EPMT makes the most of its support through an integrated, collaborative approach to maintain Alaska's unique position: ahead of the invasive species curve.

Invasive Plant Management Terminology

Exotic, alien, and non-native

plants are those present in a given area due to accidental or intentional introduction by humans. The majority of non-native plants are beneficial to society, including staple crops and ornamental plants.


plants are plants that produce viable offspring in large numbers and have the potential to establish and spread in natural areas. Invasive plants often have a negative effect on ecosystems and may cause economic losses or harm to human health.

Native plants

are those that live or grow naturally in a particular region.


plants are non-native plants that reproduce consistently in their new environment and sustain populations over many life cycles without direct intervention by humans.

Noxious weeds

are plants that have been defined as undesirable by a legal statute—local, state, or federal.


any plant, native or non-native, that is undesirable to people in a particular time or place.

Last updated: April 17, 2017