The Nature of Roadsides and the Tools To Work With It
Advanced Search
Select up to three search categories and corresponding keywords using the fields to the right. Refer to the Help section for more detailed instructions.

Search our Collections & Repository

All these words:

For very narrow results

This exact word or phrase:

When looking for a specific result

Any of these words:

Best used for discovery & interchangable words

None of these words:

Recommended to be used in conjunction with other fields



Publication Date Range:


Document Data


Document Type:






Clear All

Query Builder

Query box

Clear All

For additional assistance using the Custom Query please check out our Help Page


The Nature of Roadsides and the Tools To Work With It

Filetype[PDF-21.28 MB]

Select the Download button to view the document
This document is over 5mb in size and cannot be previewed
  • English

  • Details:

    • Publication/ Report Number:
    • Resource Type:
    • Geographical Coverage:
    • Abstract:
      Highway corridors crisscross the nation. The rights-of-way ROW) that border the highway pavement total over 12 million acres of land neighboring parkland, farmland, natural areas, etc. ROW management affects adjacent lands. Invasive plants do not respect political boundaries or fencelines. Care for these acres is complicated by many uses: I. recovery zone for errant vehicles, 2. utility lines, 3. snow storage/ living snowfence, 4. open space, 5. wetland mitigation, 6. wildlife habitat/corridors, 7. esthetic greenways, 8.signage, and 9. refuge of biodiversity. The roadside is a highly disturbed landscape, beginning with the highway's original construction. It continues to be disturbed with upgrades, mowing, spraying, snowplowing, grading/blading, dredging, signage, utility and fiber optic lines, and errant vehicles. How do planes react to these disturbances? Wherever bare soil results, nature's tendency is to repair itself The first plants to occupy those bare spots are survivors that tolerate full sun, draughty and low-nutrient soils. These pioneers can be native or nonnative; depending on the soils and adjacent propagules. They are more likely to be invasive nonnatives if the soil seed bank has a history of disturbance or the adjacent land has been disturbed. Consequently, invasive nonnatives or weedy species are a continuing problem in roadside management. We have a responsibility to control and eradicate these invasive plants in the landscape. Prevention and control is also a legal obligation in 38 State Weed Laws. Respecting the plant species listed by adjacent States is being a good neighbor. Those lists warn you about aggressive plants known to exist nearby. Weeds move easily through disturbed highway corridors. In the name of safety, improved visibility and obstacle-free roadsides, roadside vegetation managers favor grasslands. Until recently, tl1ose grasslands were commonly defined by available agricultural, nonnative grasses. Those grasses are bred to be predictable and establish easily. The establishment of regional native grasses has been studied and can also fill chat practical and predictable niche in roadside vegetation. The science of native grass establishment, or revegetation, has evolved to the point where they can be planted almost as easily. Once established, the native grasses save maintenance dollars over time, provide a self-reliant and hardy plant community, improve wildlife habitat, and protect the local character and natural heritage of a site. Because grasslands meet our practical and safety needs, local native grasslands can serve as models for roadside management. More than half of the United States was once covered naturally by grasslands: Palouse, prairies, Great Basin, meadows, glades, savannahs, balds, pine barrens, and ochers. In forested States, holding back the encroaching forest or natural succession results in a manageable grassland.
    • Format:
    • Main Document Checksum:
    • File Type:

    Supporting Files

    • No Additional Files

    More +

    You May Also Like

    Checkout today's featured content at

    Version 3.26