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Invasive Weeds Threaten Lake Tahoe

TitleInvasive Weeds Threaten Lake Tahoe
Author/CreatorCobourn, John; Purdy, Shelly; Segale, Heather M.
Related item(s)Press Release available at
Date Original2003-08-11
Summary/DescriptionLake Tahoe Report Segment #31 - "Invasive Weeds" (Air Date: September 2, 2003). Larry Hughes of Douglas County and Sue Donaldson from the University of Nevada Reno Cooperative Extension discusses efforts to combat the spotted knapweed, a non-native plant that causes soil erosion.
SubjectInvasive plants -- Control -- Tahoe, Lake, Region (Calif. and Nev.)
Noxious weeds -- Control -- Tahoe, Lake, Region (Calif. and Nev.)
LocationLake Tahoe (Calif. and Nev.)
Tahoe, Lake (Calif. and Nev.)
CollectionThe Lake Tahoe Report
Original PublisherLake Tahoe Environmental Education Coalition (
Electronic PublisherUniversity of Nevada, Reno - Department of Teaching and Learning Technologies
Ordering and Permissions InformationFor more information, contact the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, or 775-832-4138.
Date Digital2004-12-06
RelationRequires Windows Media Player
Resource TypeMoving Image
Contributing InstitutionUniversity of Nevada, Reno
TranscriptionSegment 31 "Invasive Weeds" (Air Date: September 2) Anchor Intro: There's a new weed that's starting to take hold in the Lake Tahoe area- and it has local forest managers very concerned. In tonight's Lake Tahoe Report, Shelly Purdy takes a close look at the spotted knapweed. ((Take Pkg)) ((Track 1)) The spotted knapweed is not native to the Tahoe Basin - in fact it's not native anywhere in the United States. But it's here. And, once it becomes established it can be very difficult to get rid of. And that can be an especially troublesome problem here in the Tahoe Basin. ((standup @ 20:11 Shelly Purdy)) "These big swaths of purple flowers may look beautiful but don?t be fooled?when spotted knapweed comes in they take over and choke out all the other plants.? ((sot @16:59 Sue Donaldson, UNR Cooperative Extension)) "The plant has the ability to emit a chemical into the soil and that chemical will keep other plants from being able to grow." ((Track 2)) Which is cause for concern because of the way the spotted knapweed grows. It has long roots that grow deep into the soil but don?t hold the dirt. And that leads to erosion. ((sot @ 14:10)) "We have research data that shows erosion more than doubles when a site is invaded by spotted knapweed." ((Track 3)) And increased erosion contributes to algae growth?which is clouding the clarity of Lake Tahoe. So what can you do to help?? If you identify spotted knapweed in your yard - pull it out. Put it in a plastic bag and throw it away. Or call an expert to get some advice about what to do. The knapweed it easy to identify. It has a small flower, about the size of a thumbnail. And underneath the flower there are several tiny bracts with black tips on them. And even though the plants may look pretty - they don't belong here. With the Lake Tahoe Environmental Education Coalition, I'm Shelly Purdy for kolo News Channel 8. ((Anchor Tag)) If you think you have spotted knapweed growing in your yard, contact your county agriculture department, or visit our website at for information about how to reach an expert in your area that can help you get rid of the plant.

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