Protect Against Invasive Species

Dan Hilburn, Plant Division Administrator at the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA), has a big job. He and his ODA colleagues are responsible for protecting Oregon from invasive plants, pests and diseases. The Plant Division works in partnership with the nursery industry, to ensure that the plants Oregon ships to other parts of the country, Canada and internationally, are healthy and disease-free, thus helping Oregon’s nursery industry—one of the largest in the country—thrive.

Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria)
invades wetlands. Photo courtesy of

Dan takes his job very seriously, but in addition to being a good writer, he also has a sense of humor. Invasive plants, pests and disease are seldom, if ever, funny, but Dan’s blog about invasive species is informative and witty. “Showdown in the Boxwood Hoophouse” and “Will We Rue Goat’s Rue” are his latest blog posts.

We all can play a role in safeguarding Oregon’s environment and our nursery industry. The first step is to avoid purchasing, planting or growing invasive plants and we suggest that you remove those you might be growing in your garden. Dan’s blog can help you stay informed and GardenSmart Oregon: a guide to non-invasive plants offers alternatives to invasive plants. The guide is available on the OAN website or you can stop by our office in Wilsonville to pick up a copy.

And of course, your wonderful local garden centers and specialty nurseries can help you select the right plant for that special place in your garden. Contact the OAN office (503.682.5089) for a free Nursery and Garden Center Guide or visit the online guide.