Plant Pest Insider Newsletter - February 2020

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

Plant Pest Insider Newsletter logo with bug and leaf

A Newsletter from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture

February 26, 2020

Free Emerald Ash Borer Field Workshops

Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) staff will be leading free Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) field workshops this winter. These hour-long outdoor workshops will provide an opportunity to get a firsthand look at EAB-infested trees and will assist communities in becoming familiar with early detection. General EAB biology, distribution, management, regulation, and insecticide treatment will also be covered. Workshops will be offered three times each day at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. Workshops are provided free of charge through support from the US Forest Service.


  • March 2 and March 3 at Central Park in Medford, MN (Steele County)
  • March 10 and March 11 at Wargo Nature Center, Lino Lakes, MN (Anoka County)
  • March 24 and March 25 at Pioneer Village, Worthington, MN (Nobles County)
EAB Workshop participants

Job Openings

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture has a variety of positions open for job seekers. Please visit the State of Minnesota Careers website for more information about the following job postings.

  • Tribal Liaison & Outreach Coordinator
  • Forest Pest Gypsy Moth Surveyor

Bohemian (hybrid) knotweed

New Weeds on the Minnesota Noxious Weed List

The MDA has added six new weeds to the state’s Noxious Weed List. The Noxious Weed List places weeds into four categories, Prohibited Eradicate, Prohibited Control, Restricted, and Specially Regulated, and defines how the weeds must be controlled. Three weeds on the list also changed categories.

The six new species added to the list are:

The three species that changed categories are:

  • Japanese knotweed (Polygonum cuspidatum) and giant knotweed (P. sachalinense) were moved from Specially Regulated to Prohibited Control.
  • Tree of heaven (Ailanthus altissima) was moved from Restricted to Prohibited Eradicate.

Read More

Gypsy moth management aerial application

Gypsy Moth Open House

The MDA and partner organizations are planning to tackle gypsy moth infestations in Minneapolis, Wabasha County, and Houston County this spring. In anticipation of the proposed treatment, the department is inviting people to learn about the effort at an open house.


Nokomis, Minneapolis

Thursday, February 27, 6:30 – 8 p.m.
Keewaydin Recreation Center – 3030 East 53rd Street, Minneapolis, MN 55417

Read More

Minnesota GreenCorps logo

Minnesota GreenCorps 

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) is excited to announce that the 2020-2021 Minnesota GreenCorps Host Site application period is now open! 

GreenCorps members may serve in one of four overarching focus areas:

  1. Air pollutant reduction
  2. Green infrastructure improvements
  3. Waste reduction, recycling, and organics management
  4. Community readiness and outreach 

Host site application materials, including the application, detailed guidance document, sample workplan, and sample host site agreement are available on the Minnesota GreenCorps website. Applications from eligible organizations interested in hosting Minnesota GreenCorps members are due by 5 p.m. CDT on Wednesday, March 18, 2020. Please direct questions to MN GreenCorps or 651-757-2580. 

The MPCA recorded a WebEx information session about this host site opportunity. See the Minnesota GreenCorps website for more information and access to the session.

Current host sites wishing to participate in the 2020-2021 program year must submit a new application proposing a distinct member project that is either unique to or builds from past member positions. Past participation as a host site does not guarantee selection for subsequent years of the program. Previous site performance, including timeliness of in-kind and member reporting, site visit reviews, member support, and communication with Minnesota GreenCorps program coordinators will be taken into consideration.

Read More

An aerial image of a Palmer amaranth infestation. Photo courtesy of Curtis Olson, University of Minnesota.

Using Drones to Combat Noxious Weeds

Noxious weeds, characterized by their aggressive behavior, continue to be an increasing problem throughout the United States. Early detection is critical in order to contain and/or eradicate an infestation. Ground-based surveys for weeds require time and money to cover a relatively small area. The data collected from ground-based surveys may only provide a limited amount of information regarding the extent and spread of any target weed. Remote sensing, using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), can provide a more efficient method to map and monitor an area for noxious weeds.

Read More

Oriental bittersweet vine with fruit

Noxious Weeds in Eight New Counties

The MDA confirmed in 2019 five species of weeds on the state’s Noxious Weed Prohibited Eradicate List for the first time in eight counties.

Weeds categorized as Prohibited Eradicate are the worst types of weeds. The law requires species on this list to have all above- and below-ground plant parts destroyed because the weeds may be harmful to public health, the environment, public roads, crops, livestock, or other property.

Collaboration with multiple agencies and organizations throughout the state, including County Agricultural Inspectors, township supervisors, and city mayors, helps the MDA successfully detect noxious weeds on the eradicate list and confirm unrecognized species.

The new finds were:



Black swallow-wort (Cyanchum louiseae)


Cutleaf teasel (Dipsacus laciniatus)

Blue Earth

Oriental bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus)


Oriental bittersweet (Celastrus orbiculatus)


Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri)


Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri)


Poison hemlock (Conium maculatum)


Poison hemlock (Conium maculatum)


Poison hemlock (Conium maculatum)



Annual Reports

The MDA has 2019 annual reports for the following topics available on the MDA's website.

Minnesota Certified Firewood

Certified Firewood Logo

The MDA has certified nine firewood producers in the state of Minnesota for heat treatment of firewood. Look for the logo when purchasing firewood. It means the firewood is safe to move and is free of emerald ash borer.

Certified firewood producers:

  • Emily Forest Products
  • JN Firewood  
  • Minnesota Firewood LLC
  • Paul's Fireplace Wood Inc.
  • Price Firewood
  • Sunset Firewood Company
  • TSL Firewood
  • Wood Chuckers Firewood LLC
  • Leroy Habiger "The Firewood Man"
Arrest the Pest logo

Call us at 888-545-6684

Email us at