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National Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month

April 3, 2019

Baton Rouge, La.  (April 3, 2019) – Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has declared April “Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month.”

“Invasive pests attack trees, plants and agriculture. The damage can be severe and eradication efforts are costly,” said Strain.

Pests hide inside plants, fruits, vegetables and firewood. They can spread when household items are moved to different locations. They can also spread when people travel.

Tips to prevent the spread of pests:

Remove egg masses and insects from patio furniture, grills, bikes and other outdoor items.

Before traveling out of state by vehicle, clean it first. Check the wheel wells, bumpers and other hard-to-see areas to ensure it is free of soil, egg masses and insects.

When purchasing plants, make sure you purchase from a retailer that complies with federal and state quarantine restrictions.

Do not take untreated firewood with you, for example, on a camping trip. Buy certified, heat-treated firewood at your destination.

When traveling internationally, do not bring home an unusual plant, a souvenir made from plants or wood, or even a piece of fruit as a snack for the plane trip home. It is also recommended that you research beforehand to see what will be allowed to take back into the U.S.

For more information on invasive pests, go to: and click on the Hungry Pests link.