NAFB–April is “Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month”. Samantha Simon, USDA’s Executive Director of Emergency and Domestic Programs, says April is typically the best time to spot many of the damaging, invasive species that can attack the crops in rural America, as well as garden plants and trees.

As farmers know very well, invasive species can cause a lot of economic damage. Simon says a lot of people don’t realize they can spread hungry pests by way of items that they move.

If you find any signs of invasive pests, Simon says it’s important to take the right steps as soon as possible

Simon talks about ways to help slow the spread of invasive pests.

The United Nations estimates that invasive pests destroy up to 40 percent of food crops and cause $220 billion in trade losses worldwide. For more information, go to