Prohibited plants ...

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

This topic just came to my attention this week.

Apparently I am growing at least one PROHIBITED convolvulaceae species known as Ipomoea aquatica (also known as water spinach or swamp morning glory). I did not know this was a plant that was forbidden in Florida and I am sure the person who granted my request for a seed of this plant did not know either!

Well, much to my reluctant disappointment, I destroyed my beautiful potted plant today. It went out with the trash pickup. I never even got to see it bloom. What a bummer!

I understand the reason this plant is prohibited now after reading more here, but it doesn't make it any easier for me to have killed it. It was really a beautiful plant and I felt it was of no threat because it was potted and contained, but I guess there may be other ways for this plant to have escaped my pot.

And ... I sure wouldn't want USDA or APHIS to come knocking at my door:

Thumbnail by beckygardener
(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

Now in the photo above, you will also see my I. batatas vine in the hanging basket.

I was also told THAT is another vine that may be a problem.


Apparently, Ipomoea batatas have a 3 year quarantine period due to mosaic virus. Now the one you see in the basket is one of two that I bought from Home Depot last year in their garden center. So what does this mean? I should not be buying I. batatas or sharing mine with anyone or receiving any from friends? Someone please explain this to me. I looked on the internet but have not be able to find anything specific about the surrounding conditions of buying or sharing this plant.

And ... am I even allowed to grow it? If not, then I can't tell you how many stores and folks that have this potatoe. You can buy them at the grocery store! When I taught summer school, the classroom at the school I worked at had 3 of them being started in glass jars! LOL!

So someone please clarify what this is all about!

I love my I. batatas and I have several in hanging baskets or raised pots!

Thumbnail by beckygardener
(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

And lastly, I need to know about Ipomoea fistulosa ... It's also on the Prohibited plant list for Florida!

Is this the same convolvulaceae species as I. carnea? Are they the same plant or different?

This plant is grown as landscape bushes in Florida. I saw one at Disney World several years ago. I got my seeds from another Floridan. You can buy the seeds and plants at nurseries and online stores in Florida!

I love my little I. carnea bush! It is not aggressive growing. I prune it to get it to become bushier. I can only get seeds if I hand-pollinate the blooms, otherwise no seeds at all. It is slow growing. Does not appear to throw underground runners. So ... why is it on the prohibited list? Anyone know? Or is I. carnea and I. fistulosa two different species?

I would not have ever even known about these plants being prohibited or having a 3 year quarantine period if another member hadn't recently informed me.

And yes! I am making myself very transparent here by bringing this up. But I bet a lot of folks don't know if what they are growing are on the prohibited plant list for their state. I sure didn't!

So if USDA or APHIS wants to pay me a visit, I will welcome them. And while they are here, I would really like to show them the vacant lots surrounding my house. There are somewhere between 30-50 Brazilian Pepper Trees encroaching upon my property. (There are probably over a 1000 total pepper trees growing on those vacant lots!!) And on some of those very invasive trees, I am seeing Virginia Creeper vines attached to and growing right up and along with the Pepper trees! Ack!

My dh and I have to go out there behind our privacy fence and hack back all those trees. We have to do that TWICE a year! My dh is allergic to the sap from those trees and has to wear long sleeves and long pants! And to make matters worse ...those dang Pepper trees drop thousands upon thousands of seeds every year all over my backyard! I hate them!!! It would be so nice to see something done about those horrible trees!! Who do I call???

Thumbnail by beckygardener
Jackson, SC(Zone 8a)

Becky aquatica is one they will have a fit over even here because its aggressive in the water and takes over. also another one here is water hyacinth.

i have seen them fine people here up to 1000.00 .

call your county extension agent and ask them or they can tell you who to call.

also try the Department of Environmental Protection in flordia. they are the ones who make the rules and reasons why. they can tell you what you need to know. just look it up for the number for your area

i wouldnt throw anything else out yet tell you know the reasons why and talk to someone who actually knows.

but will say aqautica is outlawed in a lot of states

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

This message was edited Jul 2, 2010 1:36 PM

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

Jon - LOL! Yeah ... that plant doesn't sound like it would be worth the trouble or risk. LOL!

I have a single Scarlet Hibiscus plant growing among my water garden containers. The leaves on that one I have been told resemble the cannabis leaves! I grow this hibiscus for the large red blooms. It's a hummingbird attractor! :-) It makes some visitors to my backyard do a double-take until I explain what the plant REALLY is! LOL!

Interestingly enough... My dil recognized the I. aquatica plant in the container during a visit to my home. Apparently it is a food source in China and is used in some of their recipes. Her father loves to cook it up! LOL!

This message was edited Aug 6, 2009 9:49 AM

I would be very careful about contacting government officials about banned plants. Iíve heard horror stories about Florida officials doing terrible damage to peopleís homes and gardens during eradication programs. Here in my neck of the woods, a neighbor had several huge Datra plants she was forced to remove from her yard. Another neighbor told me she was forced to remove them because they were a legally prohibited plant. I havenít had a chance to talk to the owner of the plants to confirm this; it may have been our intrusive and retarded HOA that forced the removal.

All of my Morning Glory plants are illegal under Arizona law. A friend described how she obtained her seeds from her favorite garden center; they were kept under the counter like hard core pornography and the clerk only showed them to trusted customers when nobody else was in the shop. It was all very hush-hush, and they asked her to keep it a secret! I can tell you from experience that it isnít possible for most of the commonly grown species to escape from cultivation here. Unless you water them several times per day, they will not survive. This is the third year Iíve attempted to grow them in Arizona and the first time Iíve been successful.

This message was edited Aug 6, 2009 10:12 AM

Birmingham, United Kingdom

It's all covered here, various links

There is something here on transit information on plants

This is why they want to detect pests

If unsure just contact you local inspector here -

Certain These non-native species are prohibited from use in Florida and other states according to the Federal Noxious Weed List (USDA), the Noxious Weed List of the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DOACS), or the Prohibited Aquatic and Wetland Plants List of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) carry a fine or even imprisonment.

On a national basis some are prohibited and restricted species as defined in the natural resources and environmental protection act

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

Well lets hope no government officials read this thread, LOL.


(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

Marie - I think prohibiting I. aquatica makes perfect sense since it is highly invasive around bodies of water. Well, mine will never be a problem. It's fried. They don't last very long without moisture. :-)

MusaRojo - Unfortunately, I have had to turn folks down who have requested MG seeds from me who live in AZ. It does seem like a ridiculous law, but the lawmakers must have their reasons to want to keep all MGs out of your state. Though I highly doubt that I. nils would be a problem there. I have perfect growing conditons here for that species and it is not invasive at all.

Ray - Interesting links! Thanks for posting them.

Boy! I am just a simple gardener who is obviously pretty darn clueless concerning some plant species! Names can be confusing too. Many plants share the same common name.

Weeds are VERY invasive here in Florida. It is a never ending battle pulling out weeds in my garden beds. Most plants seem to thrive here in my zone ... especially the weeds! LOL!

Jon - Well if they do read DG threads, I am sure I am not the only person that never thought to check their state Prohibited Plant list. But I bet anyone reading this thread has done so since. They are probably out in their yards ripping out and destroying plants and seeds right now as I speak! :-) I am sure that I am NOT the only idiot here! :-)

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

Nope there's another idiot right here LOL,

Jackson, SC(Zone 8a)

and here lol

(Zone 7a)

adding my own garden variety idiocies to the stew

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

Confession. I once unwittingly grew a cannabis plant admiring it for it's foliage and perfume, until a friend
said "Oh you grow marijuana then" and I hastily pulled it from the ground! How dumb can you get?
Why O why cant we grow the things we want in our gardens if there is no intention to abuse or alow it to escape to the wild. I'm told MG seeds are an hallucinogen and is the primary reason why they are forbidden
in some places,
second confession, I had to look up hallucinogen.


Birmingham, United Kingdom

The invasive list is here; it is under review in 2010 with a view to make invasive species within
the areas outlined prohibited. These are divided up by state to cover species and exact range,

APHIS can still destroy any type of plant if they feel these are a threat and are being grown in-situ in a garden environment
or that they are being propagated and there is a risk of seed being sent to a prohibited area, I clarified this today with the USDA as I have friends and family who I trade with.

It is against the law to send seed or material of an convolvulaceea species to an area where it is prohibited in that state, every state has it's own law, and if it is an invasive species you could be in effect responsible for ecological damage in that area.

Here is the MASTER MAP that shows the exact range of invasive species
(check you state) (You must scroll down on that page to see all the states)

Maybe you should make this a sticky so people can see what is invasive or prohibited state by state and choose
what to grow or where to send it?

Links include photos:

Ipomoea alba (white moon flower)

Ipomoea amnicola (red centre morning glory)

Ipomoea aquatica (swamp morning glory)

Ipomoea barbatisepala A. Gray
canyon morning-glory

Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.

Ipomoea cairica (L.) Sweet
mile a minute vine

Ipomoea cardiophylla A. Gray
heartleaf morning-glory

Ipomoea carnea Jacq.
gloria de la manana

Ipomoea coccinea L.

Ipomoea cordatotriloba Dennst.

Ipomoea cordifolia Carey ex Voight
heartleaf morning-glory

Ipomoea costellata Torr.
crestrib morning-glory

Ipomoea cristulata Hallier f.
Trans-Pecos morning-glory

Ipomoea dumetorum Willd. ex Roem. & Schult.

Ipomoea hederacea Jacq.
ivyleaf morning-glory

Ipomoea hederifolia L.

Ipomoea indica (Burm. f.) Merr.
oceanblue morning-glory

Ipomoea lacunosa L.

Ipomoea leptophylla Torr.
bush morning-glory

Ipomoea lindheimeri A. Gray
Lindheimer's morning-glory

Ipomoea longifolia Benth.
pinkthroat morning-glory

Ipomoea macrorhiza Michx.
largeroot morning-glory

Ipomoea ◊multifida (Raf.) Shinners [coccinea ◊ quamoclit]
cardinal climber

Ipomoea nil
Japanese Morning Glory

Ipomoea pandurata (L.) G. Mey.
man of the earth

Ipomoea purpurea (L.) Roth
tall morning-glory

Ipomoea quamoclit L.

Ipomoea sagittata Poir.
saltmarsh morning-glory

Ipomoea setosa Ker Gawl.
Brazilian morning-glory

Ipomoea tricolor Cav.

Ipomoea triloba L.

Ipomoea turbinata Lag.

Ipomoea wrightii A. Gray
Wright's morning-glory

These ones below are prohibited in certain states.

Ipomoea aquatica
Chinese waterspinach
swamp morningglory
water spinach

Ipomoea carnea ssp. fistulosa
Ipomoea fistulosa
gloria de la manana

Ipomoea coccinea
Mexican morningglory
red morningglory
scarlet morningglory
wooly tidestromia

Ipomoea cordatotriloba var. cordatotriloba
Ipomoea trichocarpa

Ipomoea hederacea
Mexican morningglory
entireleaf morningglory
ivyleaf morningglory

Ipomoea lacunosa
pitted morningglory

Ipomoea pandurata
bigroot morningglory

Ipomoea purpurea
common morningglory
tall morningglory

Ipomoea quamoclit
cypressvine morningglory

Ipomoea triloba
three-lobed morning glory

Ipomoea turbinata
Calonyction muricatum

Ipomoea wrightii
Wright's morningglory
palmleaf morningglory

Merremia tuberosa
Spanish arborvine
wood rose

Also some Solanum, datura, some forms of hibiscus and many forms of vines

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 6:49 PM

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 6:52 PM

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 6:53 PM

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 7:00 PM

Bedford, VA(Zone 7a)

Becky, how did you destroy the plant? I read your post and was thinking up ways to deliberately kill a plant and was just wondering. I thought boiling water would be the safest way so that it wouldn't resprout in the landfill, maybe burning might work too, as long as it wasn't something that would send off poisonous or oily fumes.

East Bridgewater, MA


Thank you for info!

A sticky post of prohibited plants is indeed something to consider, or even its own category on the message board, with a gov't link for each of the 50 states.

If some of you think it's a good idea, DG Administration should be given the suggestion.

Birmingham, United Kingdom


Is this something you want to take up as you started the thread and I can see it is very important to you?

As you know about sticky's and have done this before here

and it is important let everyone know here..


This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 8:10 PM

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

I will add a link in the sticky thread.

Here is the link to the Invasive and Noxious Weeds List by state.
Just click on your state or any state (if you are planning to send seeds) and scroll down the list of plants. If you click on the plant name you will get more details about the plant.:

Here are most of the "State Weed Status (Codes)":

RNW - Restricted Noxious Weed

AW - A list (noxious weeds)
BW - B list (noxious weeds)
CW - C list (noxious weeds)

CAW - Class A noxious weed
CBW - Class B noxious weed
CCW - Class C noxious weed

NP - Noxious plant
NW - Noxious weed
NAW - Noxious aquatic weed
RGNW - Regulated noxious weeds
PN - Public nuisance
Q - Quarantine
QW - Q list (temporary "A" list noxious weed, pending final determination)
P - Prohibited
PP - Plant Pest
IAP - Invasive aquatic plant
IB - Invasive, banned
INB - Invasive, not banned
PIB - Potentially invasive, banned
PINB - Potentially invasive, not banned

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 8:19 PM

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

dragonfly53 - Hi! Good question, as I know others may be wondering, too.

I did not find a link anywhere that stated how to officially destroy/eradicate a prohibited plant.

In the case of the I. aquatica which is a plant that lives in water. Mine was in a pot in standing water. I pulled the entire plant out, chopped it up with hedge clippers, dumped it in one of my large plastic bins, poured straight bleach on the roots which also collected in the plastic bin and let it sit out in the sun. This treatment appeared to kill the plant pretty quickly. Between the sun baking the roots and the bleach poisoning it, the plant wilted and died that day. I pulled the bin onto my covered patio when it rained, and pulled it back out into the sun the following day. It looked quite fried at this point.

I dumped the remains into a large black heavy duty trash bag. And placed into another black trash bag. (Double bagged it!) It was picked up by the trash collectors on the third morning. Bleach smell was still a little noticable. I used bleach because I didn't want to use a stronger chemical. Also it discourages bugs, birds, and rodents from ingesting or moving the plant pieces. So if the bags get torn apart at the landfill, the plant won't likely attract anything that might eat it or use it for nesting material. The bleach should dissipate over a short time. By then, there shouldn't be anything at all left of this plant.

Now, I don't know if this was the proper way to dispose of this plant. Being an aquatic plant, using bleach did it in quick. I don't know if this would work well for non-aquatic plants. But carefully removing a plant with all roots intact and letting it sit in a plastic bin to completely dry out in the sun would kill the majority of plants. If you kill the roots, you kill the plant.

My plant did not have any seeds. If your plant has seeds, I would imagine that the seeds need to be removed first before removing the plant from the ground or a container. Seeds and all plant parts need to be destroyed. Crushing seeds would probably do the trick for destroying them. Put them in a ziploc baggie and take a hammer to them! Then leave them out in the sun in the baggie to fry. That's probably what I would've done if my plant had seeds on it.

If anyone knows a better way or the proper way, I would love to hear it!

This message was edited Aug 7, 2009 9:07 PM

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

When I lived in the UK I had a very large patch of Japanese knot weed that had invaded my garden from
some adjacent waste ground. Knowing that it was in fact a notifiable weed in the UK, I phoned the local authority. Four men turned up a week later with a digging machine creating a huge hole! They took away all
the remains in heavy duty bags and told me It would have to be incinerated. Boy what a mess they made!


(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

Jon - Sorry to hear they didn't clean up your yard after they removed the thug. I've heard similiar stories here in the USA.

I am relunctant to burn plants without knowing how noxious and toxic they are. Fumes from a burning plant could be dangerous to people and animals.

East Bridgewater, MA


I think you get the "Good Citizen Award" for going above and beyond the call of duty in destroying a noxious weed!

Back 30 years ago, we would've just composted it, and hope the seeds would rot in the excess moisture.

(Debra) Derby, KS(Zone 6a)

*sigh* I am moving to the country..

Tokyo, Japan(Zone 10a)

Joeswife I did and a different one at that! LOL

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

BostonArea_6A - I doubt I would qualify for "Good Citizen Award". More like "Naive Gardener Award". But I am learning ... :-)

Does anyone know ANYTHING concerning the Ipomoea batatas quarantine due to the mosaic virus???

I can not find anything about growing or sharing those beautiful plants. Perhaps it has to do with importing and exporting them with other countries?

The reason Ipomoea species are banned in Arizona is because of ignorance on the part of cotton growers and their bought and paid for legislators in Phoenix. Because of contaminated planting seed, contaminated animal feed, and other sloppy practices, field bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis) became a problem in fields of cotton, alfalfa, rice, and other crops and fouled up harvesting equipment. Never mind that cultivation of alfalfa, cotton, and rice is totally inappropriate for a desert climate, the panic from the problems caused by bindweed resulted in the banning of its relatives in the Ipomoea clan. Somehow this botanical ignorance didnít extend to bindweedís other relatives in the Argyreia and Merremia clans.

Unlike perennial bindweed, annual ipomoea species are not able to survive on their own in desert climates. If you grow them, they must be watered every day, often two or three times per day if the temperature is over 100 degrees. Any unwanted volunteer seedlings will disappear after being caressed by gentle desert breezes with temperatures of 110 degrees or more. Annual ipomoea species are not a threat to agriculture in Arizonaís climate, and my guess is few if any of the perennial species would present a problem either.

This message was edited Aug 8, 2009 1:04 PM

(Becky) in Sebastian, FL(Zone 10a)

MusaRojo - I fully understand your frustration with the Arizona law prohibiting most Ipomoea species, including what (I agree) are NOT invasive species. I probably have the perfect climate to grow I. nils and I have never had a volunteer show up to became a nuisance! Some of the I. purpureas come and go, but the majority of the I. nil vines are well-behaved in my experience.

Perhaps gardeners and garden centers, nurseries, and businesses in your state need to challenge the law. If there is enough support, laws CAN be changed. :-)

As far as sending/sharing Ipomoea seeds/plants to AZ currently ... I must defend myself and others as to why I won't trade or share Ipomoea seeds with gardeners in Arizona. Those Arizona laws carry heavy penalties including fines and possible imprisonment. I would hope that no one would expect me or others to put ourselves at risk of prosecution by breaking the current laws.

Birmingham, United Kingdom

I think they are illegal in Arkansas as well? or at least prohibited.

I have heard that even if APHIS think that normal seed could be ipomoea aquatica they take it away for testing, if they find any other bacteria or fungal spores on it they destroy the lot.

This message was edited Aug 8, 2009 5:50 PM

Jacksonville, AR(Zone 7b)

No they are not illegal in Ar as well. They are sold in every mom and pop garden center, Lowes, HD's, Wal-Mart, you name it. They are listed as
a noxious weed. Ridiculous as I never see any wild stands of any
glories or convolvulus. I order them in from Parks,Burpees,Logees
T and M etc. I get so tired of hearing this. Even the FDA let them come to me from England's POD since I only ordered 2 pkts and they wrote
for home use only.

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