Should I control Russian Olive?

By Grant Woods,

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← Grant's AnswersHabitat Management
I’ve been hunting a 225 acre farm in southern Illinois for about 6 years now. Due to my military obligation keeping me away, this last year has been the first year I have actually been able to get out and do some property management. I’ve been reading and watching videos like a mad man trying to learn as much as I can so I can give the property the much needed attention it needs. There’s one major issue I’ve been struggling with. The property is covered in Russian olive. Every field edge is lined thick with them, they have taken over parts of the woods, and they surround every pond and creek on the property. I know they are invasive, and I want to clear them all out, but before I do I want to know if clearing them out, particularly from field edges and ponds, will negatively effect the deer? I don’t want to cut them all out and in turn run the deer off because I cut out their security blanket. There are plenty of hard and soft woods but the olive are getting out of control. Any knowledge you share on the subject would be greatly appreciated.
Will Hayes


Thank you for your service to our nation!

Russian Olives are very invasive and will likely keep spreading!  I suggest you to work to control/eradicate them. Even with concentrated efforts they are tough to eradicate.  

If you do remove them something else will grow there. I’m not worried about a lack of cover as anywhere the sun reaches soil vegetation will grow unless there are outstanding circumstances.  

You might enjoy some of the information about Russian Olive at:

Enjoy creation,


November 2, 2015