Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Tamarisk: ecohydrology of a successful plant

January 1, 2013

The title of this chapter is adapted from an influential 1987 paper, "Tamarix: Impacts of a Successful Weed" (Brotherson and Field, 1987). That paper made the case for tamarisk (Tamarix spp.) removal, as a high-water-use, invasive species that out-competed and displaced native vegetation on western U.S. rivers. The paper declared that tamarisk was capable of drying up water courses, using as much as 4 m of water per year (expressed as the depth of water applied to an indefinite area the same way rainfall is expressed), water could otherwise support environmental or human water needs. It was also thought to out-compete native trees for establishment sites due to prolific seed production. The paper concluded: "A firm commitment must be made concerning the control of saltcedar because of its unparalleled aggressiveness." This conclusion became the reigning paradigm in riparian restoration efforts for the next decade.

Citation Information

Publication Year 2013
Title Tamarisk: ecohydrology of a successful plant
Authors Pamela L. Nagler, Martin F. Quigley
Publication Type Book Chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Index ID 70157244
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Southwest Biological Science Center