Stewardship Overview: Rosa multiflora is a concern on several preserve lands, notably in New Jersey and Indiana. It is considered a serious problem on old fields and agricultural land in many southeastern states. Monitoring should be conducted on preserves where it presents a potential problem, followed by active management if necessary. The most effective means of eradication seem to be cutting followed by herbicide application. Glyphosate is commonly used and can be effectively applied in a 1% V/V solution, or 0.5% V/V solution if a surfactant is added, applied directly to the plants, cut branches, or stumps. Spring applications should show increasing control over the season with complete residual control the following spring. Repeat applications may be necessary in subsequent years to prevent recurrences.
Species Impact: In the 1930's, the U.S. Soil Conservation Service advocated the use of multiflora rose for soil erosion projects and as a "living fence" to confine livestock (Albaugh et al. 1977). Experimental plantings were conducted in Missouri and Illinois (Steavenson 1946), and as recently as the late 1960's state conservation departments in many states were giving away rooted cuttings to property owners (Schery 1977). Hedges of multiflora rose have also been used as a crash barrier and to reduce headlight glare in the medians of highways (Schery 1977, Hipkins et al. 1980). The plant is extremely prolific, however, and successfully invades pastures and other unplowed lands, crowding out existing vegetation and creating dense, impenetrable thickets. In some areas entire pastures have been taken over (Barbour and Meade 1980, Doudrick 1987). Cattle are often reluctant to enter fields dominated by multiflora rose (Fawcett 1980), and it has also been shown that rose hedges lower the crop yields on adjacent fields by competing for nutrients (Labisky and Anderson 1965).