Tree Killers: Siberian Peashrub

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  • Common English name: Siberian peashrub
  • Other names: Siberian pea-tree, caragana
  • Latin (scientific) name: Caragana arborescens

Threat type

150x150 plants

History in Canada

  • commonly planted for hedges and windbreaks, especially on the prairies
  • escaped from Alberta to Quebec but mainly a problem on the prairies


  • a perennial, woody shrub that grows to four metres tall (12 ft)
  • belongs to the Pea family
  • four to six pairs of small leaflets make up each compound leaf
  • pairs of sharp spines occur at the base of the leaves
  • fragrant, bright-yellow flowers are produced in spring that develop later into long bean-shaped pods containing many seeds
  • when mature, the pods turn brown and pop open, ejecting the seeds away from the parent shrub
  • drought and salt tolerant and able to grow in poor, dry soil
  • has a very dense and extensive root system
  • can reproduce from seeds and from root suckers

Impact on Trees

  • may grow in dense stands in open woodland, forest openings, or woodland edges
  • suppresses native tree seedlings due to shade

What can be done to control this tree killer?

  • cutting trunks followed by herbicide application to the cut trunks
  • herbicide application to the entire shrub
  • several years of control may be needed since the seeds are unaffected by the above methods and seedlings can recolonize an area

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