Date of Completion


Embargo Period



John Volin, Glenn Warner

Field of Study

Natural Resources


Master of Science

Open Access

Open Access


Physiological responses of Phragmites australis (Phragmites) to the covering of black plastic were studied from 2011 to 2013 in Schoolhouse Brook Park, Mansfield, Connecticut. Nine 6 x 6 m plots were randomly established as either control, early-mid season covered, or late season covered within a monotypic Phragmites stand. Black plastic was applied from March to July 2011 and again from June to September 2012 (early-mid season). Another treatment was in place from September to November 2011 (late season). Rhizomes were sampled for their concentration of total non-structural carbohydrates (TNC) within each plot. Monthly rhizome samples were taken from a control plot from June 2012 to March 2013 to examine seasonal variation. June exhibited the lowest concentration of TNC at 68 mg g-1 dry weight and September the highest concentration of TNC at 285 mg g-1 dry weight. No significant difference in TNC was observed among treatments until March 2013 where both the early-mid season and late season treatments showed a reduction in TNC compared to the control. We suggest cutting Phragmites and covering with black plastic need repeated applications the following year to improve control and would recommend cutting in June as it is the time of most depleted rhizome TNC storage.

Major Advisor

John Clausen