In every garden there are weeds. Normally, you'd think of weeds as just plants where you don't want them, but for the Geo Quiz, we want you to identify the country that produced an invasive plant that's spread to Britain's four corners.
It's tough enough to break pavement and concrete. And nearly 100 years ago it was a prized plant in the gardens of stately homes, but try to get rid of it and you've got problems. This Asian plant is usually found near volcanoes in its home country. Its full name gives us the answer, but if you're a gardener, the second half of its name, 'knotweed,' should be the biggest clue of all.
Japan is the answer to the Geo Quiz and the plant is called the Japanese knotweed. British scientists have a plan to get rid of it, but rather than turn to a native species, they are turning to an insect, which is fussy enough to only eat that plant. It's from the plant's native country: Japan.
The insect, called 'Aphalara itadori', is being brought into the United Kingdom to counter the destructive Japanese knotweed. Host Marco Werman talks to Dr. Dick Shaw, lead researcher for the project from the Oxford-based Commonwealth Agricultural Bureaux International.
Will you support The World?
There is no paywall on the story you just read because a community of dedicated listeners and readers have contributed to keep the global news you rely on free and accessible for all. Will you join the 314 donors who’ve stepped up to support The World? From now until Dec. 31, your gift will help us unlock a $67,000 match. Donate today to double your impact and keep The World free and accessible.