A study, which looked at National Biodiversity Network figures from 49 local authorities in Britain, found that the invasive weed has spread like wildfire across the country. The troublesome plant species was originally imported into the UK from Japan back in the 19th century. It was originally thought that the plant would stabilise and add natural beauty to railway embankments.
Shockingly, 12 percent of the 907 UK homeowners surveyed by YouGov had never heard of the invasive weed.
Nearly half (47 percent) also claimed they did not know what the plant looked like from a line-up of plant images.
Dean Wilson from Horticulture.co.uk said if you are looking to buy a property, you need to instruct a surveyor to check for Japanese Knotweed.
He said: “When instructing a surveyor for your new home purchase, always ask them to look for Japanese Knotweed and other invasive plants.”
Which regions have the most confirmed cases of Japanese Knotweed in the UK?
Over the last five years, South Yorkshire has seen the most confirmed live cases with a more than 77 percent increase in the past five years.
South Yorkshire was followed by Hampshire, West Sussex, Kent and Powys.
In the last five years, the national average of confirmed cases has soared to 29,536, a 27.91 percent increase.
UK regions with the most growth in live cases over the last five years:
County: South Yorkshire
Total confirmed live cases: 1,111
Five-year change: +77.19 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 123
Five-year change: +73.24 percent
County: West Sussex
Total confirmed live cases: 155
Five-year change: +72.22 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 217
Five-year change: +64.39 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 923
Five-year change: +61.93 percent
County: North Yorkshire
Total confirmed live cases: 215
Five-year change: +58.09 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 280
Five-year change: +53.01 percent
County: West Yorkshire
Total confirmed live cases: 1,762
Five-year change: +52.82 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 200
Five-year change: +49.25 percent
Total confirmed live cases: 146
Five-year change: +47.47 percent