The Enemy - Saltcedar (Tamarix ramosissima) is a deciduous or evergreen tree that inhabits water ways, especially small reservoirs. This invader has small scale-like leaves and pink to white flowers, giving the tree a very beautiful appearance. This plant was and continues to be introduced through the nursery industry but is now listed as a noxious weed. This tree can be shrub like or if old enough can look like other cedar trees. Unfortunately it has been seen along the green-belt in Idaho Falls and around Ririe Reservoir.
The Strategy - Saltcedar develops roots very quickly and once established it has the ability to drain all the water out of small water systems. One single tree can use up to 200 gallon of precious water each day. I have seen lakes in Nevada that are dry and once the tree is removed the lakes fills back up. It also drips a ‘salty’ residue which prevents other plants from growing around it (like Arborvitae), but this residue remains even after the tree is removed.
The Defense - DO NOT PLANT ONE – As this is now a noxious weed in Idaho which makes is illegal to plant. Cutting down the tree (even if it was planted years ago by Grandma) is most effective, but it will be necessary to ‘paint’ a herbicide on the fresh cut surface to kill the stump. You can try to pull the small plant up, but even a 3 foot tree can have roots deep enough that they snap off at the ground. There are a few insects available to control the tree, but the birds love to eat them.
Garlon plus Milestone tank mix on resprouting brush. For more information on use of Garlon and Milestone to control saltcedar click to read about Saltcedar Invasive Species Management. Also, this article on
Saltcedar and Russian Olive Management.
Link to Milestone label
Link to Garlon 4 Ultra label
Link to Garlon 3A label
Click for general recommendations on Dow AgroSciences Herbicides.
For technical information on use of Dow AgroSciences herbicides to control of invasive noxious weeds click here.
Click here for more technical information on use of Dow AgroSciences herbicides to control of invasive noxious weeds.
Watch for off-target drift of the herbicide. Most importantly, watch for this plant in your nursery magazines as it is the wrong plant to plant in our area.
PLEASE NOTE - The proper use and application of herbicides can be an effective way to control and eradicate noxious and invasive plants. Before using herbicides, always carefully follow the label and safety instructions on the label. While we recommend the use of herbicides as one of the effective tools for integrated pest management, the Idaho Weed Awareness Campaign assumes no liability for herbicide applications.
For more information, click on the link below to download the Idaho's Noxious Weeds Control Guidelines publication produced by the University of Idaho Extension.
U of I Idaho's Noxious Weeds Control Guidelines (183 KB PDF download)