Invasive species survey & control

There are currently 1,377 non-native plant species within the UK, but only 8% of these are considered invasive.

Invasive non-native species can disrupt our native plant and animal species, threatening biodiversity, ecosystems and habitats – resulting in serious environmental and economic damage.

If you have a project in mind, or want to speak with a member of our team - please get in touch.

Contact our team 0800 157 7707

Invasive non-native species (INNS) management service

Through our Property Care Association (PCA) qualified consultants and trained specialist technicians, we offer a complete invasive non-native species (INNS) management service, including detailed surveys, management plans, treatment and excavation.

In accordance with the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (which states that it’s illegal to plant or allow certain invasive non-native species to spread into the wild), we can help you at any stage – to locate, manage or treat any size of infested area. These are just some of the species we can help you with:

Japanese knotweed

Commonly found in urban areas and along riverbanks, Japanese knotweed’s root system spreads widely and rapidly. It can exacerbate existing structural faults in building foundations and drainage systems, greatly devaluing property and often causing problems with conveyancing.

Our PCA certified surveyors can carry out a comprehensive survey of your and neighbouring properties to assess the extent of the infestation, and identify any potential constraints to management.

We can produce a management plan to determine the most appropriate method of control, including a schedule, detailed maps and permit application. Our specialist in-house technicians are trained and experienced in carrying out the recommended control operations.

Giant hogweed

A tall plant reaching a height of at least 3.5m, giant hogweed grows on moist rich soils and is commonly found on riverbanks, woodland edges, road verges, gardens and allotments.

Giant hogweed is harmful to humans as the sap causes the skin to become very sensitive to sunlight resulting in blisters, pigmentation and scarring. With a single plant capable of producing up to 20,000 seeds, it spreads easily – and its large size means it can outcompete other native plants.

Our specialist consultants carry out comprehensive surveys of your site to assess the extent of the infestation. We then produce a management plan to determine the most appropriate method of control, including a schedule and detailed maps. Our specialist technicians then carry out the recommended operations to control the plants.

Himalayan balsam

Commonly found on riverbanks and ponds, Himalayan balsam can also spread into neighbouring woodlands and field edges. This annual plant has purplish pink clusters of helmet-shaped flowers which emerge in July.

Himalayan balsam is a vigorous plant which rapidly spreads to outcompete native plants. Each plant can produce up to 800 seeds which can be dispersed up to 7m away when the ripe seed pods explode. Seeds entering rivers are carried downstream, causing the plant to spread along riverbanks.

We have extensive experience of managing this invasive weed. Often working on a landscape-scale, our collaborative approach to management often connects many land managers along a river to ensure effective control.

Whether you have Himalayan balsam on only your site, or are part of a network of land managers with it, we’re here to help you find any available grant funding and the most cost-effective method of control.

Rhododendron ponticum

During the Victorian era, Rhododendron was widely planted in parks, gardens and estates. Confined to acidic soils, it’s found in moorland, woodland, screes and rocky banks.

An aggressive coloniser, populations of native species, birds and other wildlife can be greatly reduced in an invaded area, reducing biodiversity. In many cases, the ground beneath a large Rhododendron plant can appear completely sterile with no other flora or fauna.

Often forming part of a woodland management plan, our chartered consultants deliver best practice advice on the management and control of Rhododendron ponticum.

In all cases, we tailor our treatment specifically to the conditions of the site, offering cost-effective eradication and control by one of the following methods:

  • Repeated cutting and mulching
  • Mechanical clearing and burning
  • Cutting and removing
  • Herbicide treatment

In addition, we also survey, manage and obtain permits for the control other INNS such as Quagga and Zebra Mussels, New Zealand Pygmyweed, Parrot’s Feather, Floating Pennywort, Variegated Yellow Archangel, Virginia Creeper, False Virginia Creeper, Montbretia, Japanese Rose, American Skunk Cabbage and Giant Rhubarb.

Take a look at our INNS calendar for details of the seasonal restrictions associated with eradication.

Ecological Survey and INNS Calendar

To find out more about our invasive species survey & control services, contact a member of our team today

0800 157 7707 Get a quote

Take a look at our related services and sectors that we work with


"A seamless service; from initial survey, to clear and practical management plans. From senior management level to operative, I have found their staff to be professional, hard-working, courteous and well-disciplined."

J. Merrill, Affinity Water

Case studies