Beginning October 6, 2021, Japanese barberry and two other invasive plant species were added to the list of plants that are illegal to propagate or sell in Pennsylvania.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Controlled Plant and Noxious Weed Committee placed a notice in the Pennsylvania Bulletin on August 7 officially adding the following species to the Noxious Weed List as Class B noxious weeds:
• Berberis thunbergia, Japanese barberry
• Microstegium vimineum, Japanese stiltgrass
• Alliaria petiolate, garlic mustard
This becomes effective 60 days after notice.
Most notable is the addition of Japanese barberry, a popular nursery and landscaping plant. Until the Department of Agriculture develops a process to apply for permission to sell sterile varieties, both sterile and nonsterile varieties are banned.
The first two years of enforcement will be incremental, to allow for outreach to plant merchants, landscape professionals, and other states to enable the industry to work towards compliance.
Noxious weeds are determined to be injurious to public health, crops, livestock, and agricultural land or other property and cannot be sold, transported, planted, or otherwise propagated in Pennsylvania. Class B noxious weeds are widely established and cannot feasibly be eradicated. You can learn more about the Pennsylvania’s Noxious weed law by clicking here.