Five species of invasive non-native aquatic plants are to be banned from sale, the UK government has announced.
In the first ban of its kind, officials hope the move will save money and help protect vulnerable habitats.
Yup, some plants are just so dangerous we can’t have them in the country. Haven’t we heard this before?
So…what are they? Triffids?
The plants to be banned from April 2014 are water fern, parrot’s feather, floating pennywort, water primrose and Australian swamp stonecrop.
Ah. Popular in the aquatic trade, mainly for indoor aquariums, as most would only survive outside in hot summers.
But wait! Isn’t it already illegal to dump them in the waterways?
The plants have been listed in the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, but it was only illegal to dump the plants into the wild.
As well as being a threat to native species, the NNSS said invasive non-native aquatic weed plants also contributed to increased flood risk and damaged structures such as bridges.
Not that such a fanciful idea as not building housing on floodplains could ever help with that…
Although details of the ban have been announced now, it will not come into force until next spring to give retailers enough notice to conform to the new measures and identify and stock alternative plants.
I can foresee quite a black market growing up in these plants! After all, if I grow some and exchange them with another enthusiast, I’m not a retailer, am I?