Phalaris arundinacea L. (reed canarygrass) is one of the most noxious invasive species in North American wetlands, rivers, and lakes. As is true for many invasive species, detailed research may give insights into the ecological and evolutionary factors that promote reed canarygrass invasion. However, important insights into control strategies of reed canarygrass may be gleaned from a synthesis of all the relevant ecological and management studies. We assessed the control strategies previously applied to contain reed canarygrass invasions, the potential for new promising strategies, and the research that is still needed to improve its control in North America. We showed that no one method is sufficient, and that the most successful strategies require both physical and chemical methods, coupled with hydrological management. Moreover, subsequent restoration of the community structure and composition is needed to limit new infestations of reed canarygrass or other invaders. Biological control has not been developed yet for reed canarygrass. Finally, the current knowledge of ecological factors that enhance reed canarygrass invasion suggests that any attempt to eradicate it and limit its spread will be jeopardized if an integrated pest management strategy is not undertaken. Given the high sensitivity of wetlands to plant invasion, management of invasive species must switch from isolated efforts of stand eradication to a landscape approach, emphasizing infestation prevention and accounting for surrounding human activities and the socio-economic context.
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