Solidago gigantea (giant goldenrod)
- Summary of Invasiveness
- Taxonomic Tree
- Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature
- Plant Type
- Distribution Table
- History of Introduction and Spread
- Risk of Introduction
- Habitat List
- Hosts/Species Affected
- Biology and Ecology
- Soil Tolerances
- Notes on Natural Enemies
- Means of Movement and Dispersal
- Pathway Causes
- Pathway Vectors
- Plant Trade
- Impact Summary
- Environmental Impact
- Risk and Impact Factors
- Uses List
- Similarities to Other Species/Conditions
- Prevention and Control
- Distribution Maps
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PicturesTop of page
IdentityTop of page
Preferred Scientific Name
- Solidago gigantea Aiton
Preferred Common Name
- giant goldenrod
Other Scientific Names
- Solidago × leiophallax Friesner
- Solidago pitcheri Nutt.
- Solidago serotina Aiton, non Retz.
- Solidago serotina var. gigantea (Aiton) A. Gray
- Solidago serotinoides A. & D. Löve
- Solidago shinnersii (Beaudry) Beaudry
International Common Names
- English: late goldenrod; smooth goldenrod
Local Common Names
- France: solidage tardif; verge d'or géant
- Germany: Reisen-Goldrute
- Hungary: magas aranyvesszo
- Italy: verga d'oro maggiore
- Japan: oh-awadachi-so
- Netherlands: late guldenroede
- Spain: vara de oro gigantiflora
- SOOGI (Solidago gigantea)
Summary of InvasivenessTop of page
S. gigantea has spread in a number of European countries after introduction as an ornamental plant from its native North America. It continues to be available as an ornamental from mail-order catalogues and web-sites of commercial nurseries and botanical gardens. Morita (2002) indicates that S. gigantea is less noxious than S. altissima, but it is an undesirable invader on account of its large rhizomes and vigorous growth leading to gross changes in the native vegetation and fauna. S. gigantea is not a serious weed in annual crops since it can be controlled by tilling. However, it invades poorly managed pasture and can be a considerable weed in forest nurseries and in perennial gardens and crops.
Taxonomic TreeTop of page
- Domain: Eukaryota
- Kingdom: Plantae
- Phylum: Spermatophyta
- Subphylum: Angiospermae
- Class: Dicotyledonae
- Order: Asterales
- Family: Asteraceae
- Genus: Solidago
- Species: Solidago gigantea
Notes on Taxonomy and NomenclatureTop of page
Solidago gigantea belongs to the canadensis complex and to the subgenus Triplinervae with triple-nerved leaves. There is considerable taxonomic confusion within the genus Solidago, notably within the S. canadensis complex. However, S. gigantea appears to generally be one of the more clearly defined taxa within that complex. It is a variable taxon and several varieties have been distinguished (S. gigantea Aiton var. gigantea, S. gigantea Aiton var. leiophylla Fernald, S. gigantea Aiton var. pitcheri (Nutt.) Shinners, S. gigantea Aiton var. serotina (Kuntze) Cronquist, S. gigantea Aiton var. shinnersii Beaudry), some of these are granted subspecies status. The taxon is also referred to as S. gigantea subsp. serotina (Kuntze) McNeill. The plants occurring in Japan are referred to as S. gigantea Ait. var. leiophylla Fern. (Morita, 2002). For more information see Weber and Jakobs (2005).
DescriptionTop of page
S. gigantea is a 30-280 cm tall, erect rhizomatous perennial with annual aboveground shoots and persistent belowground rhizomes. One to several rhizomes emerge near the base of the dying shoots in autumn, thus leading to a branched rhizome system rooted mainly at the old and current shoot bases. Aerial stems arise from the rhizome apices in the following spring. Roots are inserted at the shoot base and reach a minimum depth of 20 cm. Stems are unbranched except in the inflorescence. Stems are glabrous and often glaucous below the inflorescence. They may be weakly hairy in the inflorescence only. Stems may have a purplish cast and a white, waxy bloom. A nodding shoot tip is occasionally observed in the native range.
Leaves are simple and alternate, sessile, with the largest leaves towards mid-stem and decreasing in size upwards. Leaves are triple-nerved, glabrous or sometimes pubescent beneath, lanceolate, often acuminate, with margins mostly serrate, occasionally entire. Inflorescences form broad pyramidal panicles with recurving branches and a central axis. Bracts of the involucre are linear, obtuse or somewhat acute. Ray florets are golden yellow, female and fertile; disc florets bisexual and fertile. The capitula are 3-5 mm long. Achenes are pubescent, 1-2 mm long, with a pappus of 1 mm long.
Plant TypeTop of page Herbaceous
DistributionTop of page
S. gigantea is native to the USA and Canada, between the latitudes 30°N and 55°N, and introduced to Europe and temperate parts of Asia. The zonal amplitude stretches from the meridional to the subboreal belt in the eastern part of the European range (Meusel and Jäger, 1992).
Distribution TableTop of page
The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.
|Continent/Country/Region||Distribution||Last Reported||Origin||First Reported||Invasive||Reference||Notes|
|Japan||Restricted distribution||EPPO, 2014|
|-Hokkaido||Present||Introduced||Tsuyuzaki, 2002; EPPO, 2014|
|Korea, Republic of||Present||Introduced||1960s||Cho et al., 2013|
|-British Columbia||Present||Native||USDA-ARS, 2003|
|-New Brunswick||Present||Native||USDA-ARS, 2003|
|-Northwest Territories||Present||Native||USDA-ARS, 2003|
|-Nova Scotia||Present||Native||USDA-ARS, 2003|
|-Prince Edward Island||Present||Native||USDA-ARS, 2003|
|-New Hampshire||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-New Jersey||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-New Mexico||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-New York||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-North Carolina||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-North Dakota||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-Rhode Island||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-South Carolina||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-South Dakota||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|-West Virginia||Present||Native||USDA-NRCS, 2004|
|Albania||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Austria||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Belgium||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Bulgaria||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Czech Republic||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Denmark||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Faroe Islands||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Finland||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|France||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Corsica||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Germany||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Greece||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Hungary||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Ireland||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Italy||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Liechtenstein||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Luxembourg||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Netherlands||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Norway||Widespread||Introduced||Invasive||Sunding, 1989; Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Poland||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Portugal||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Azores||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Romania||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Russian Federation||Restricted distribution||EPPO, 2014|
|-Central Russia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Eastern Siberia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Northern Russia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Southern Russia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Serbia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Slovakia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Slovenia||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|-Balearic Islands||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003|
|Sweden||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Switzerland||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|UK||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
|Ukraine||Present||Introduced||Invasive||Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, 2003; EPPO, 2014|
History of Introduction and SpreadTop of page
S. gigantea was introduced into Europe as an ornamental plant in the mid 1700s, and the first observations of wild populations date back to the mid 1800s (Wagenitz, 1979). The patterns of spread of the exotic species S. gigantea after its introduction to Europe were investigated, based on herbarium specimens and literature records. Cumulative numbers of localities as well as numbers of occupied grid squares showed a continuous increase since 1850 for this species. The spread of the species in area and time over Europe showed no clear front, and new localities at large distances were colonized simultaneously. A large part of the present range of S. gigantea was already occupied by 1950 (Weber, 1998). The spread pattern across Europe is similar to that in Poland where the abundance increased rapidly in the 1900s (Guzikowa and Maycock, 1986). S. gigantea may still be expanding its range in Europe (Weber, 2001).
IntroductionsTop of page
|Introduced to||Introduced from||Year||Reason||Introduced by||Established in wild through||References||Notes|
|Natural reproduction||Continuous restocking|
|Korea, Republic of||1960s||Yes||Cho et al. (2013)|
|UK||USA||1758||Botanical gardens and zoos (pathway cause)||Yes||Weber and Jakobs (2005)||Distributed to gardens and nurseries in Europe|
Risk of IntroductionTop of page
S. gigantea is a widespread wild and ornamental plant in Europe. After its introduction it has shown itself well able to naturalize in temperate regions of the world. In Switzerland, this species is on the 'black list', i.e. neophytes whose negative ecological impacts have been documented, and which are problematic from a conservation point of view (CPS-SKEW, 2003).
HabitatTop of page
S. gigantea is a forb growing in a wide range of different soil conditions but is not shade tolerant (Ellenberg et al., 1992). In its native range grows mainly in forest edges and roadsides, secondary old-fields and unmanaged areas where it colonized after establishment in a short time. In central Europe, S. gigantea is widely naturalized and is found in uncut grasslands, wetland edges, riparian habitats, forest edges, and along road sides (Hartmann and Konold, 1995; Botta-Dukát and Dancza, 2001; Weber, 2003).
Habitat ListTop of page
|Terrestrial – Managed||Cultivated / agricultural land||Present, no further details|
|Managed forests, plantations and orchards||Present, no further details|
|Managed forests, plantations and orchards||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Managed grasslands (grazing systems)||Present, no further details|
|Disturbed areas||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Rail / roadsides||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Urban / peri-urban areas||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-natural||Natural forests||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Natural grasslands||Present, no further details|
|Riverbanks||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
|Wetlands||Present, no further details||Harmful (pest or invasive)|
Hosts/Species AffectedTop of page
In its native range, S. gigantea can occur in any crop; however, it is not a serious weed in annual crops since it can be controlled by tilling. However, it invades poorly managed pasture and can be a considerable weed in forest nurseries and in perennial gardens and crops.
Biology and EcologyTop of page
S. gigantea shows variation in chromosome numbers with three different cytotypes in its native range. They are listed below according to the nomenclature of Beaudry (1963, 1974); throughout this datasheet, S. gigantea represents the whole S. gigantea complex:
S. gigantea, 2n = 2x = 18 (trichomes on midveins)
S. serotina, 2n = 4x = 36 (glabrous narrow leaves)
S. shinnersii, 2n = 6x = 54 (glabrous wide leaves)
Beaudry (1974) distinguished a further, tetraploid variety, S. serotina forma huntingdonensis, defined by trichomes uniformly covering the lower leaf blade. In contrast, Melville and Morton (1982) find the cytotypes to be morphologically inseparable because of overlapping variation, although there might be a tendency for stronger leaf serration and pubescence in the diploid S. gigantea (Morton, 1984). Therefore, all cytotypes are treated as a single species by Morton (1984), despite being genetically separated.
In Europe, only the tetraploid form is widespread (Schlaepfer et al., 2008; 2010).
In north-east America, the hybrid S. canadensis L. x S. gigantea Ait. has been reported, which has also been identified in France (Wagenitz 1979). In nurseries, S. ptarmicoides (Torrey & A. Gray) B. Boivin (Syn.: Solidago asteroides, Aster ptarmicoides) has occasionally been observed to cross with various Solidago species, among them S. canadensis, the hybrids are known as Solidaster (Schillinget al., 2008).
Microsatellite primers for S. gigantea have been developed (Beck et al., 2014).
Physiology and Phenology
The germination of achenes and the storage carbohydrates of the rhizomes of this species were investigated in samples collected from 16 locations in Hungary in 1998, to study the contribution of these characteristics to the invasiveness of this species (Szabó and Balogh, 2000). Good achene germination was recorded (20-30% germination), especially during spring, but the germination of samples from different locations was highly variable (Laszlo and Lajos, 2000).The germination is frequent in abandoned fields and unmanaged grasslands. The most suitable conditions for germination are the surface of undisturbed soils and gaps in uncut grasslands. In the rhizomes, free sugars were present in early autumn, especially sucrose and fructose, and fructan storage polymers were accumulated in the rhizome during autumn (Szabó and Balogh, 2000). Biomass production was determined mainly by water supply, especially by the rainfall in the first part of the growing season. Early in the growing season, the time of shoot initiation is determined by temperature. The plants responded to summer drought by reducing their leaf area. The rate of leaf decline is influenced by the amount of rainfall, although rainfall has no effect on the formation of leaves. The size and thickness of leaves decreases during the season but the number of leaves does not change considerably; the reduction of leaf area is caused by the diminution of leaf size (Dancza and Botta-Dukát, 2000; Botta-Dukát and Dancza, 2001).
S. gigantea contains various compounds including terpenoids, phenolic compounds, coumarines, polyacetylic substances, polysaccharides, essential oils and diterpenebutenolides (Gerlach, 1965; Jurenitsch et al., 1988; Johnson et al., 2007). The roots contain large amounts of furanoid compounds and acidic compounds (solidagoic acids) (Anthonse et al., 1973). The hydrodistilled essential oil of aerial parts of S. gigantea contains up to 90 constituents (Kalemba et al., 2001). The saponins of S. gigantea have been analysed by Jurenitsch et al. (1986) and Reznicek et al. (1996).
S. gigantea is a rhizomatous hemicryptophyte and has a complex life cycle with rhizome and seed propagation. Seeds of European plants do not show dormancy and do not need scarification or stratification. (Voser-Huber, 1983). The fruit of S. gigantea is an achene with attached pappus. The major pollinating agents of S. gigantea are honeybees (Apis mellifera), bumblebees (Bombus spp.), soldier beetles (Chauliognathus pennsylvanicus) and syrphid flies. Although seeds are essential for long-distance dispersal and the colonization of unoccupied sites, they are not important for the spatial extension of established populations. Intensive shoot growth starts in April and shoot height increases nearly linearly until the end of July when final height is achieved. Inflorescences are formed from June onwards. Peak flowering time is between mid-August and end of September, but flowering can continue through October in central Europe. Seeds are easily dispersed by wind, but only in dry weather conditions. Rhizome buds are formed during the summer and grow to rhizomes in autumn. Occasionally, rosettes may be formed in autumn, but normally rhizomes produce shoots in spring of the following year. The main growth period for rhizomes is late summer and autumn.
The habitat preferences of the North American Solidago species are wide. S. gigantea prefers heavy soil types and wetland edges. It usually colonizes semi-natural habitats and often occurs on riverbanks in central Europe. It establishes well in disturbed sites and becomes dominant due to extensive vegetative spread. In the exotic range in Hungary, S. gigantea proved to be a more successful invader than S. canadensis/S. altissima, whereas these species have a wider natural geographical distribution than S. gigantea in their native North America (Dancza and Botta-Dukát, 2003).
S. gigantea is a characteristic species of nitrophilous communities with tall forbs along riverbanks (Class Artemisietea; Ellenberg et al., 1992). Tüxen (1950) distinguished a Rudbeckia laciniata-Solidago canadensis association and Moor (1958) described the Impatienti-Solidaginetum and Impatienti-Solidaginetum associations. S. gigantea forms extensive stands in Onopordetalia-, Aegopodion- and Alliarion communities and penetrates into abandoned Arrhenatheretea meadows (Oberdorfer, 1994). In Hungary, S. gigantea is a character species for other associations, Agropyro-Solidaginetum and Eupatorio-Solidaginetum (Kovács, 1994).
ClimateTop of page
|C - Temperate/Mesothermal climate||Preferred||Average temp. of coldest month > 0°C and < 18°C, mean warmest month > 10°C|
|D - Continental/Microthermal climate||Preferred||Continental/Microthermal climate (Average temp. of coldest month < 0°C, mean warmest month > 10°C)|
Soil TolerancesTop of page
Notes on Natural EnemiesTop of page
A great diversity of insect herbivores attack S. gigantea in its native range. Meyer et al. (2005) observed over 20 different insect taxa in 5 orders feeding on plants in a garden over a 2 year period. These included spittlebugs (Philaenus spumarius), aphids (Uroleucon caligatum and U. nigrotuberculatus), beetles (Trirhabda virgata, Exema canadensis), various caterpillars, various leaf mining and leaf galling insects (including Asteromyia sp.), and other gall-making insects (Epiblema scudderiana, Gnorimoschema gallaesolidaginis, Rhopalomyia sp). The goldenrod ball gall (Eurosta solidaginis) is also known to occur on S. gigantea (Abrahamson et al., 2001).
The insect fauna of S. altissima (as S. canadensis var. scabra), S. fistulosa, S. gigantea and S. leavenworthii was surveyed in 1981-84 in and around Gainesville, Florida, USA. The 122 phytophagous species collected are listed and classified according to relative frequency of occurrence, guild, host range, plant part attacked, life stages collected, and associated Solidago species. Only 14 (11%) of the phytophagous species are known to be restricted to Solidago and Aster (Compositae). There were eight insect species considered as possible biological control agents of Solidago spp. Eurosta sp. attacking roots, two leaf chewers Ophralella sexvittata and Sparganothis distincta, two leaf miners Agromyzidae sp. and Cremastobombycia solidaginis, a leaf galler Asteromyia carbonifera, and Schizomyia racemicola and Schinia nundina attacking flowers and seeds (Fontes et al., 1994).
Heteropteran species attacking S. gigantea in the Czech Republic have been reported by Rohacova and Drozd (2009)
Foliar pathogens attacking S. gigantea in North America include a rust fungus (Puccinia dioicae), a powdery mildew (Erysiphe cichoracearum), and a bacterial pathogen (Xanthomonas sp.) (Meyer et al., 2005). A powdery mildew (Golovinomyces asterum var. solidaginis) has been reported on S. gigantea in Korea (Cho et al., 2013).
S. gigantea has a rich herbivore fauna in its native range but experiences very little herbivory in its introduced range. Jakobs et al. (2004) found that a majority of surveyed S. gigantea populations in North America had herbivore damage, compared to virtually no signs of herbivory in European populations. Plants in Europe were also larger and grew at greater density than plants in North America, suggesting that reduced herbivory may contribute to the invasiveness of S. gigantea in Europe. Several garden experiments have explored whether release from herbivory in the introduced range has resulted in evolution of reduced defenses and/or greater investment in growth and reproduction in European plants. There is evidence that European plants have lower levels of anti-herbivore defenses compared to North American plants: they have lower foliar concentrations of monoterpenes and diterpenes, supported better performance of a generalist caterpillar, and were more susceptible to foliar pathogens (Meyer et al., 2005; Johnson et al., 2007, Hull-Sanders et al., 2007). European plants also tended to be larger than North American plants when grown in gardens (Güsewell et al., 2006; Meyer and Hull-Sanders, 2008). Although European plants produced more inflorescences than North American plants in a European garden (Güsewell et al. 2006), in a North American garden European plants were less likely to flower and showed a greater investment in rhizome biomass compared to inflorescence biomass than North American plants (Meyer and Hull-Sanders, 2008).
Means of Movement and DispersalTop of page
S. gigantea is propagated by seeds and rhizomes. Seeds are produced in very large numbers and long-distance dispersal is by wind. Short-distance dispersal is possible by rhizomes through infested soil (Weber, 2011). Accidental introduction is possible through human activity, such as collecting fruited shoots as an ornament and then disposing of them on rubbish heaps. Seeds and rhizomes may also be dispersed as a result of movement of soil in the course of building work, and by attachment to vehicles or in the slip-stream of road and rail vehicles. S. gigantea seeds are available by via mail-order catalogues and web-sites of commercial nurseries and botanical gardens as an ornamental species, and this may lead to further introduction.
Pathway CausesTop of page
Pathway VectorsTop of page
Plant TradeTop of page
|Plant parts liable to carry the pest in trade/transport||Pest stages||Borne internally||Borne externally||Visibility of pest or symptoms|
|Fruits (inc. pods)|
|Plant parts not known to carry the pest in trade/transport|
|Growing medium accompanying plants|
|Stems (above ground)/Shoots/Trunks/Branches|
|True seeds (inc. grain)|
Impact SummaryTop of page
|Fisheries / aquaculture||None|
ImpactTop of page
S. gigantea is an alternative host of insects that can be vectors of plant pathogens. In infested areas, litter accumulation makes the field restoration difficult. According to Béres and Kazinczi (2000), residues of S. gigantea reduced germination of test crops but fresh weight of crop seedlings was stimulated. Shoot extracts of S. gigantea reduced germination of wheat by 7.6% and germination of barley by 9.8%, whereas in bioassays, extracts of S. gigantea increased the fresh weight of wheat and barley plants.
Environmental ImpactTop of page
Large areas covered by S. gigantea are mostly the result of inappropriate management of grasslands and abandoned fields. Once established, S. gigantea outcompetes native species and in this way negatively affects fauna and flora. Dominated communities lead to a decrease of field diversity, with a loss of protected native plant and animal species, and also loss of common character species in the new homogenized landscape. Extensive stands in reeds are of concern to managers of conservation areas.
Risk and Impact FactorsTop of page Invasiveness
- Proved invasive outside its native range
- Has a broad native range
- Abundant in its native range
- Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
- Highly mobile locally
- Has high reproductive potential
- Has propagules that can remain viable for more than one year
- Reproduces asexually
- Has high genetic variability
- Damaged ecosystem services
- Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
- Negatively impacts agriculture
- Negatively impacts human health
- Negatively impacts animal health
- Negatively impacts tourism
- Reduced amenity values
- Reduced native biodiversity
- Threat to/ loss of native species
- Competition - monopolizing resources
- Pest and disease transmission
- Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
- Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant
UsesTop of page
S. gigantea is cultivated as an ornamental plant in Europe, and S. gigantea-dominated areas are suitable for honey production (Stefanic et al., 2003). The species is also used as a medicinal plant.
Uses ListTop of page
- Botanical garden/zoo
Similarities to Other Species/ConditionsTop of page
S. gigantea is distinguished from its closely related S. canadensis by having glabrous and glaucous stems. The shoots of S. canadensis are at least weakly hairy. The calyxes of ligule flowers of S. gigantea are longer than the tubular flowers of S. canadensis. S. gigantea has bright yellow flowers and the pappus is brownish-white, whereas the flowers of S. canadensis are somewhat lemon-yellow and the pappus silvery whitish.
Prevention and ControlTop of page
The enormous infested grassland areas are effects of the poor previous management practices, and in grasslands, continuous mowing or grazing is necessary every year to prevent establishment of Solidago species.
Systematic mechanical control such as mowing is effective against Solidago species, and at least two mowings per year of the infested area are necessary. During restoration of grasslands, continious mowing can prevent flowering and rhizomes developing in the winter and during periods of vegetative growth.
Hartmann and Konold (1995) found that effective measures to reduce shoot density and vitality include mowing once a year and mulching, or mowing twice a year without mulching, over a period of 3 years.
Germinating and young plants are sensitive to soil herbicides, but later, during the vegetative period, soil herbicides are ineffective. At heights of 10-15 cm, glyphosate, 2,4-D and several contact herbicides are suitable for the control of S. altissima. Herbicide use is required to control the weed in forest nurseries.
Although a number of natural enemies have potential as biocontrol agents (see Notes on Natural Enemies), none have been fully proven and developed (Sheppard et al., 2005).
ReferencesTop of page
Abrahamson WG; Eubanks MD; Blair CP; Whipple AV, 2001. Gall flies, inquilines, and goldenrods: A model for host-race formation and sympatric speciation. American Zoologist, 41:928-938.
Anthonse T; Henderson MS; Martin A; Murray RDH; McCrindl R; McMaster D, 1973. Constituents of Solidago species. 4. Solidagoic acids A and B, diterpenoids from Solidago gigantea var. serotina. Canadian Journal of Chemistry, 51:1332-1345.
Beaudry JR, 1963. Studies on Solidago L. 6. Additional chromosome numbers of taxa of the genus Solidago. Canadian Journal of Genetics and Cytology, 5:150-154.
Beaudry JR, 1974. Solidago shinnersii Beaudry stat. et comb. nove., une nouvelle espèce du complexe du S. gigantea. Naturaliste Canadienne, 101:931-932.
Beck JB; Semple JC; Brull JM; Lance SL; Phillips MM; Hoot SB; Meyer GA, 2014. Genus-wide microsatellite primers for the goldenrods (Solidago; Asteraceae). Applications in Plant Sciences, 2(4):1300093. http://www.bioone.org/doi/full/10.3732/apps.1300093
Béres I; Kazinczi G, 2000. Allelopathic effects of shoot extracts and residues of weeds on field crops. Allelopathy Journal, 7(1):93-98.
Botta-Dukát Z; Dancza I, 2001. Effect of weather conditions on the growth of giant goldenrod (Solidago gigantea Ait.). In: Brundu G, Brock J, Camarda I, Child L, Wade M, eds. Plant Invasions: Species ecology and ecosystem management. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publishers.
Cho SE; Park JH; Hong SH; Shin HD, 2013. First report of powdery mildew caused by Golovinomyces asterum var. solidaginis on invasive weed Solidago gigantea in Korea. Plant Disease, 97(8):1120. http://apsjournals.apsnet.org/loi/pdis
CPS-SKEW, 2003. The Swiss Commission for Wild Plant Conservation CPS/SKEW and the Swiss Commission for Cultivated Plant Conservation. http://www.cps-skew.ch/english/info_invasive_plants.htm.
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22/04/14 Updated by:
Gretchen Meyer, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA
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