MEPs voted against the proposal in a surprise move on Tuesday (1 December).
BALI technical director Neil Huck, who is also vice-president of the European Landscape Contractors Association, praised the decision, which is partly a result of lobbying from the landscape industry.
He said ELCA and BALI do want a ban on invasive species, but that the list should be much longer and allow for more flexibility between regions of the EU.
"Having a very small list is absolutely pointless," he said. "We need a list that can be added to as new threats arrive. And one common list across the whole of the EU wouldn't work because there are so many different environments - what is invasive in one part is not invasive in another."
The absence of Japanese knotweed and Giant hogweed from the list of species to be banned had also been of concern, he added. Both species are causing major issues across the continent and in the UK, with structural damage caused by knotweed estimated at €12bn per year in Europe.
Both weeds had been excluded from the proposed list partly because it was felt they were already out of control. But Huck rejects that premise, saying more regulation would help force landowners to deal with the problem.
ELCA and BALI will continue lobbying the MEPs, Huck said. He called for the landscape industry and affected nurseries to be fully consulted and included in any future decision-making.