Massachusetts Invasive Plants Advisory Group



(Legal status of above publications)


Lists of Invasive Plant Management Companies (These lists are provided for informational purposes only, and do not imply endorsement of any of the listed companies by MIPAG or any of its members)

MIPAG Plant Species Evaluation Update (2022)

In 2022, MIPAG updated the criteria used to evaluate plant species for invasiveness in Massachusetts to include climate change considerations and apply some language clarifications. MIPAG maintains a research list of species to be considered for evaluation. Whether a species is evaluated is based on a number of factors, including if it has been listed in other states, what field observations are available, and recommendations from the Northeast Regional Invasive Species and Climate Change Management Network network, including their research on range-shifting invasive plants.


Guidance for the Effective Management of Invasive Plants (2012)

MIPAG developed this document in order to provide step-by-step guidance for landowners and land managers in developing specific plans for the effective management of invasive plants. The guidance is intended to work at any scale, from a small parcel of land to statewide. The main focus of the document is invasive plant control for ecological health, although other goals of invasive plant management (such as human health and aesthetics) are compatible with this methodology. The document also provides a management case study as well as links to other relevant resources.


Massachusetts Invasive Plant Species: Early Detection Priorities (2011)

Consistent with its Strategic Plan to implement an early detection and rapid response plan for the Commonwealth, the Massachusetts Invasive Plants Advisory Group (MIPAG) has charged a subcommittee of its members to develop a list of Early Detection (ED) plant species. Tasks included establishment of criteria for selecting plants and compiling the Early Detection species list.


The Evaluation of Non-Native Plant Species for Invasiveness in Massachusetts (2005)

[This document is included as an appendix in Strategic Recommendations for Managing Invasive Plants in Massachusetts.]

The Evaluation of Non-Native Plant Species for Invasiveness in Massachusetts lists which plants are threatening or may soon threaten the Commonwealth's natural heritage. In this document, the 66 evaluated species are divided into three categories: Invasive (35); likely invasive (29); and potentially Invasive (3). Over six years in preparation, the list is based on scientific criteria utilizing historic records and current data to establish that certain species are causing a severe present or possible severe future impact across the Commonwealth or in local areas. Included in the document are the criteria used to evaluate the plants, definitions, a description of the procedure and list of members. Annotations are also included.


The documentation, references and worksheets upon which the committee based its decisions can be viewed at the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife and Game in Westborough, MA.


Strategic Recommendations for Managing Invasive Plants in Massachusetts (2005)

Strategic Recommendations for Managing Invasive Plants in Massachusetts endorses nine strategic recommendations for adoption by the Commonwealth's public and private sectors. The recommendations are based on regional and national best practices. Key points include the development of an "early detection and rapid response system," extensive education and outreach, prohibition of state agencies planting or intentionally introducing invasive plants, voluntary adoption of the St. Louis Declaration's "Codes of Conduct" for government, nursery professionals and the gardening public, and the permanent adoption of MIPAG standards, practices, and recommendations for evaluating and managing invasive plants in the Commonwealth.


[Note that the document above also includes The Evaluation of Non-Native Plant Species for Invasiveness in Massachusetts as an appendix.]


Legal status of publications

Though these publications are based on scientific criteria and best practices and have broad endorsement, they do not have legal standing in and of themselves. The professionals and scientists who developed the documents represent a broad diversity of nonprofit organizations, green industry businesses and corporations, and state and federal agencies. It is expected that because of this diversity of support the Evaluation will have broad value for everyone from homeowners to land managers, and that the Strategic Recommendations will encourage a cooperative effort among every organization, agency, and citizen concerned with the threat to the Commonwealth of invasive plants.


Prohibited Plant List for Massachusetts:

Representatives of the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (DAR) served on the committees of MIPAG that developed the above documents. On January 1st, 2006, the Department began a two-step ban on the importation and sale of more than 140 plants identified as either noxious and/or invasive in the Commonwealth. The list of plants was in development for three years, in collaboration with a number of agricultural organizations including Massachusetts Nursery and Landscape Association (MNLA) and the Massachusetts Invasive Plants Advisory Group (MIPAG). On January 1, 2009, the ban went into full effect. The DAR list of prohibited species in Massachusetts, as well as information about the ban, can be found at

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