Is The Lupine Disappearing? - The Reykjavik Grapevine

Is The Lupine Disappearing?

Published December 9, 2011

One of Iceland’s most notorious invasive species could be on the wane, a geographer contends.
The Alaskan lupine was brought to Iceland in 1885 but not actively used for soil conservation purposes until 1960. Despite their beauty, they have long since begun to cause problems for the country as it spread quickly, choking the life out of other plants.
While numerous solutions have been proposed for how to deal with the lupine, it may so happen that the flowers are taking care of the problem for us, Vísir reports.
Geographer Daði Björnsson has taken notice of lupine growth areas, and has seen signs that the flower may be disappearing on its own. For a sample area, he chose a plot of land in Heiðmörk where lupines were planted in 1959. The flowers covered some three hectares at the time.
12 years later, however, this area was reduced to 2.1 hectares, and last summer, they only cover a single hectare.
Daði believes that the flowers are dying out, for whatever reason, and that it is very likely happening all over the country. While the news will likely be a relief to many, it still leaves unexplained how and why the flowers are dying off in the first place.

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