The Bugwood Network
NPS and USFWS

Plant Invaders of Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas

Swearingen, J., K. Reshetiloff, B. Slattery, and S. Zwicker. 2002. Plant Invaders of
Mid-Atlantic Natural Areas. National Park Service and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, 82 pp.



Silk Tree, Mimosa Tree
Britt Slattery, USFWS
Silk Tree, Mimosa Tree
Albizia julibrissin

Silk tree, sometimes called mimosa tree, was introduced to the United States in 1745 for use as an ornamental plant because of its unusual, attractive and fragrant pom-pom like flowers and interesting fern-like foliage. It occurs from California across the southern United States to New York in disturbed areas such as roadsides, forest edges and various open habitats. Silk tree is a hardy plant in the pea family (Fabaceae) that tolerates a variety of soil and moisture conditions, enhanced by its ability to produce nitrogen in its roots. It grows vigorously and displaces native trees and shrubs, spreading by seed and vegetative means.

Prevention and Control
Avoid planting silk tree. Trees can be cut at ground level with power or manual saws. Cutting is an initial control measure, best done prior to seed set, and usually requires follow-up cuttings or herbicidal treatments due to re-sprouts.

Native Alternatives
serviceberry (Amelanchier arborea), river birch (Betula nigra), redbud (Cercis canadensis), fringetree (Chionanthus virginicus), flowering dogwood (Cornus florida), sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua)


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USDA Forest ServiceUSDA APHIS PPQThe Bugwood Network University of Georgia Bargeron, C.T., D.J. Moorhead, G.K. Douce, R.C. Reardon & A.E. Miller
(Tech. Coordinators). 2003. Invasive Plants of the Eastern U.S.:
Identification and Control. USDA Forest Service - Forest Health
Technology Enterprise Team. Morgantown, WV USA. FHTET-2003-08.