Noxious Weed Facts
What Are Noxious Weeds?
Noxious weeds are non-native, invasive plants. In other words, noxious weeds are plants that are not originally from Idaho and try to take over the landscape from native plants.
What is Noxious Weed Control?
Noxious Weed Control is anything that keeps the invasive plants from taking over the land. There are many different methods of control including pulling up the plants or spraying them with chemicals to kill them or using bugs to eat the stems or leaves of a plant.
Noxious Weed Facts
- Noxious weeds cause $300 million in damage and loss to Idaho lands and economy every year.
- Noxious weeds undermine the productivity of 64 crops grown nationwide by a measure of $7.4 billion.
- If left untreated, noxious weeds will spread at an alarming rate of 4,600 acres per day nationwide.
- Noxious weeds displace native vegetation and rob wildlife of their natural food source.
- Did you know that some weeds can grow up to 20 feet tall? Saltcedar is a noxious weed that grows 5 – 20 feet tall. It looks like a shrub or a small tree with many slender branches. Salt falls from its leaves to the ground, which makes it difficult for many other plant species to grow. A single large plant can absorb up to 200 gallons of water per day.
- Noxious weeds can be aquatic (in water) or terrestrial (on land).
- Some noxious weeds were introduced in Idaho as ornamental plants. Others were introduced as a crop seed contaminant.
- The source of many weed infestations has been traced to roads, trails, railroads and other travel ways.
- Cleaning your off-road vehicle, hiking clothes or pack animal before entering or leaving a wildlife area greatly reduces the spread of noxious weeds to other wildlife areas.
- Buying certified weed free forage and straw for pack animals greatly reduces the spread of noxious weeds on Federal and State lands.
- Did you know that many noxious weeds are toxic or poisonous? Many noxious weeds are a serious health concern for humans or livestock and, therefore, impacting life and livelihood. For example: Houndstongue is toxic to livestock. It attacks the liver and causes photo-sensitization. Giant Hogweed contains toxic sap that causes photo-dermatitis and blistering.
- Did you know that some weeds can be managed with the use of biological control methods? One example of this is the Root Boring beetle, which bore into the stems of Leafy Spurge to lay eggs. When the eggs hatch into larvae, they burrow down the stem, weakening it and stressing out the plant.