The mission of the USDA/ARS Invasive Plant Research Lab (IPRL) is to address the complex and multi-faceted problems of exotic plant invasions in natural and agricultural ecosystems.
Invasions by exotic plants pose one of the most serious threats to the health and integrity of natural and agricultural ecosystems. In order to restore the function and biological diversity of these systems, managing pest plant populations is of critical necessity.
There are three main operational areas used in achieving our mission:
The IPRL conducts research into the impacts of exotic plants as well as the safety and effectiveness of biological control and other methods used to manage invasive plants.
Where possible, this research is used to enrich basic ecological knowledge. Research is also used in guiding all phases of the implementation of exotic plant control methods.
IPRL implements exotic plant control methods when appropriate with careful consideration of all available options, the health and safety of the public, and the costs and benefits to all interested parties.
Monitoring and additional research are conducted to insure the continued efficacy of implemented control programs.
IPRL also strives for a continuous dialog with the public, land management organizations including other government agencies, and the scientific community regarding all aspects of exotic plant management. It is our aim that our work will contribute to scientific investigations and help to restore and protect natural and agricultural areas.