We all loathe the invasive honeysuckle in central Ohio, but it is an excellent resource for our six-legged friends. Ryan Kitko tells us all about it in his blog post. Check it out by clicking the title below:
Common insects love the invasive Amur honeysuckle by Ryan Kitko Lonicera maackii can be identified by its leaves that taper to a narrow point and by the bright red berries found in pairs on short stalks. Other non-native species of Lonicera have more rounded leaves and bear their fruits on longer stalks. Against the backdrop of autumn’s arrival in Ohio, the conspicuous fruits of the Amur honeysuckle (Lonicera maackii) emerge in bright shades of red. This small, attractive shrub is native to northeastern Asia and sometimes also known as thebush honeysuckle. It was introduced to North America as early as 1896 and has escaped cultivation in as many as 28 states and Ontario, Canada. In southwest Ohio, it was introduced as an ornamental plant in Oxford in the 1960s and is now found in surrounding forest habitat outside the city. Lonicera maackii is a fast-growing woody shrub that thrives in open forests—those where some disturbance or edge habitat is available for colonization—and along streams and rivers in several Ohio counties, likely spread by resident winter birds that are attracted to the plentiful fruit. There is little doubt that the dense foliage and compact-branching habit of this species reduces the survival of native plants and overall diversity by outcompeting native tree and shrub saplings and woodland herbaceous plants.