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Russian Olive

Russian Olive

  • Developed by the Pahranagat Valley Cooperative Weed Management Area, this fact sheet provides information on the ecology and treatment of Russian olive. 

  • This document describes the appropriate way to utilize a frill cut treatment on Russian olive. 

    Prepared by the RiversEdge West (formerly Tamarisk Coalition) in 2008, this document addresses options for the control, biomass reduction, and revegetation management components. All currently available technologies have been evaluated; however, not all are applicable for a given river location. Tamarisk is the focus of this document’s control component because it is the principle non-native phreatophyte in western watersheds. In general, the following discussion applies to Russian olive and other invasive trees but may differ slightly for each (e.g., herbicide used).
  • This field guide serves as the U.S. Forest Service's recommendations for management of Russian olive in forests, woodlands, and rangelands associated with its Southwestern Region. 

  • Author(s): Steven W. Carothers; R. Roy Johnson; Deborah M. Finch; Kenneth J. Kingsley; Robert H. Hamre
    In the Preface to volume 1, we discuss the development of riparian ecology as one of the newest of ecological fields that gained significant momentum in the 1950s and 1960s as part of the general “riparian movement” in the United States. The field expanded rapidly throughout the latter half of the 1900s. Volume 2 involves more than two dozen authors - most with decades of experience - who expand upon riparian and other topics introduced in volume 1. Two important recent developments are global climate change and impacts of introduced tamarisk leaf beetles (Diorhabda spp.) in the American West. Other chapters in volume 2 that provide current information evaluate the losses of riparian habitat, including “extirpation” of a large number of mesquite bosques (woodlands) in the Southwest; the restoration of riparian ecosystems damaged by anthropogenic activities; the importance of a watershed; and the importance of riparian ecosystems to recreation. The combination of volumes 1 and 2 examines the evolving understanding of scientific implications and anthropogenic threats to those ecosystems from Euro-American settlement of the region to present. >> Volume 1 is also available in Treesearch:
  • This brochure, created by the Boulder Community Alliance, describes the differences between invasive Russian olive and native silverleaf buffaloberry - two plants which are often mistaken. 

  • This fact sheet from Utah State University discusses cut stump herbicide treatment, which can be used to control Russian olive at any time of the year.
  • This 1-page handout describes the differences between invasive Russian olive and native silverleaf buffaloberry. Photos of distinctive characteristics are provided. 

  • This paper reviews the pertinent scientific literature in order to determine the status of E. angustifolia as a riparian invader and to suggest ecological reasons for its success.
  • Authors:

    Sharlene E. Sing, Research Entomologist, USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Bozeman Forestry Sciences Laboratory, Montana State University Campus – FSL, Bozeman, MT
    Kevin J. Delaney, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Pest Management Research Unit, Northern Plains Agricultural Laboratory, 1500 N. Central Avenue, Sidney, MT 59270, Environmental Services Department, Costco Wholesale, Issaquah, WA


    Abstract: The primary goals of a two-day Russian olive symposium held in February 2014 were to disseminate current knowledge and identify data gaps regarding Russian olive biology and ecology, distributions, integrated management, and to ascertain the feasibility and acceptance of a proposed program for classical biological control of Russian olive. The symposium was hosted by the Northern Rockies Invasive Plant Council in conjunction with NRIPC’s 3rd Invasive Species in Natural Areas Conference, held February 10-15, 2014, in Spokane, WA. Funding to support the Russian olive symposium was received through a USDA NIFA AFRI Foundational Program grant awarded in response to the ‘Controlling Weedy and Invasive Plants’ (A1131) program priority area. Talks delivered by invited research subject experts were interspersed with facilitated large group and smaller breakout group discussions. Key invited management and stakeholder representatives also discussed first-hand experiences with Russian olive as a conflict (invasive and beneficial) species in the western U.S., and provided details about the implementation and efficacy of current Russian olive IPM options. The symposium was ultimately initiated to help establish an atmosphere of dialogue and trust among researchers, policy makers, stakeholders and resource managers. This highly focused forum allowed participants to gain a common and updated understanding of many important aspects of the biology, ecology and management of Russian olive. This in turn contributed to productive dialogue, identifying, and hopefully mitigating conflicts of interests about the potential biological control of Russian olive.

    Author(s): R. Roy Johnson; Steven W. Carothers; Deborah M. Finch; Kenneth J. Kingsley; John T. Stanley
    Fifty years ago, riparian habitats were not recognized for their extensive and critical contributions to wildlife and the ecosystem function of watersheds. This changed as riparian values were identified and documented, and the science of riparian ecology developed steadily. Papers in this volume range from the more mesic northwestern United States to the arid Southwest and Mexico. More than two dozen authors - most with decades of experience - review the origins of riparian science in the western United States, document what is currently known about riparian ecosystems, and project future needs. Topics are widespread and include: interactions with fire, climate change, and declining water; impacts from exotic species; unintended consequences of biological control; the role of small mammals; watershed response to beavers; watershed and riparian changes; changes below large dams; water birds of the Colorado River Delta; and terrestrial vertebrates of mesquite bosques. Appendices and references chronicle the field’s literature, authors, "riparian pioneers," and conferences. >> Volume 2 is also available on Treesearch:
  • This brochure, produced by Boulder Community Alliance (BCA), provides instructions on how to properly monitor your property for Russian olive resprouts. This form should be used in conjuction with another BCA produced document entitled: Controlling Russian Olive Seedlings on Your Property

    Supervised Classification of Russian Olive in the Animas Valley with NAIP Imagery and Object-Based Image Analysis
    Anna Riling1
    1University of Denver, Department of Geography and the Environment, Denver, Colorado,
    Object-based image analysis (OBIA) incorporates not only spectral but textural and spatial elements of a class and avoids the “salt and pepper” effect of pixel-based classification with high-resolution imagery.  Russian olive (Elaeagnus angustifolia) is an invasive species prevalent in the Animas Valley in southwest Colorado and is easily distinguished in aerial imagery due to its silvery-green canopy. This study used free, 1-meter, 4-band National Agricultural Image Program (NAIP) imagery to classify Russian olive in a study area on the Animas River, achieving a user’s accuracy of 91.3 percent with a K Nearest Neighbor classifier. Methodology and parameters from this pilot study are intended to be used in future efforts with feature extraction classifications for mapping Russian olive on a regional scale.
  • This brochure, created by Boulder Community Alliance (BCA), provides information on how to control Russian olive seedlings on your property after initial removal. This form should be used in conjunction with another BCA document that describes how to efficiently monitor your property for resprouts. The document is entitled Russian Olive Monitoring and Retreatment Form.

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mission is to advance the restoration of riparian lands through collaboration, education, and technical assistance.



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