Garlic Mustard

Hamilton County Distribution

  • Deciduous forests
  • Campgrounds
  • Ditches

Identification

  • First year plants look like kidney beans that grow low to the ground
  • Second year plants are erect and can grow to 4 feet
  • Toothed, triangular flowers give off a garlicky smell when crushed
  • Tiny white flowers appear in May

Threats

  • Spreads by seeds and broken roots 
  • Threatens forest understories with an early spring emergence
  • Produces chemicals that kill soil fungus important to hardwood tree growth

Management

  • Slowly pull or cut stems in late spring when in bloom
  • In the fall, pull first year plants
  • Place all plant material in a heavy duty plastic bag and allow to photodegrade
  • Repeat management efforts annually with any new growth
  • Herbicide application
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