The concept for this book goes back at least 15 years. In the meantime invasive plant species have become the ‘flavor of the month’ and the literature bursts with interesting new papers. Writing this book has been an exciting undertaking. We have written for a wide audience, and therefore take the chance that it falls between the interests of a variety of readers. Some may find sections to be too anecdotal. Others may find parts to be too technical. As we wrote we could not resist including some of the fascinating stories of the involvement of individuals in spreading plants. It is a scary thought that others may be introducing weeds of the future as we write. We hope that land managers who are charged with controlling invasive weeds and restoring habitats will find this book useful. We admire your efforts in tackling such complex problems. We value the great scientific and management contributions made by our colleagues in biological control, and are sorry we could not include all of the ideas and successes. For students, the experts of the future, we hope that invasion ecology and biological control stimulate your interest. There are many hypotheses to be tested and problems to be solved at this interface between basic and applied ecology. To all, we would be happy to get your feedback.
Many people helped in this project and two in particular deserve enormous thanks. First, Jamie Smith used up several red pens worth of ink editing the manuscript.