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Plant of the Week: Celastrus scandens

Plant of the Week! We love decorating with plants for the holidays. Their colors and scents bring warmth and memories to our doors, dining tables, and living rooms. But we have to remember to be careful when selecting our favorite botanical baubles. Plants from big box stores are often transported from out of state, potentially accompanied by new pests. Floral arrangements often contain the viable seed heads of invasive species. As if that wasn’t enough, even using native species isn’t always the answer, as it can lead to major impacts on wild populations. One plant that is experiencing such an impact is Celastrus scandens, American Bittersweet. Its berries are beautiful and long-lasting, making them very popular for arrangements. However, demand for the berries has led to a steep decline in wild populations. One way you can help is by buying American Bittersweet from a reputable nursery to plant in your yard. You can even pick your own decorative branches off your cultivated Bittersweet, in moderation, of course! To learn more about American Bittersweet and the problems it’s facing, check out this article from In Defense of Plants: http://www.indefenseofplants.com/…/…/12/american-bittersweet (Photo from In Defense of Plants)

Photo from In Defense of Plants

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