Meadow Hawkweed

Meadow Hawkweed (yellow hawkweed) Asteraceae (=Compositae), the aster family

Meadow HawkweedBACKGROUND: Meadow hawkweed came to the U.S. from Europe. This weed reproduces by seed, stolons, and rhizomes and generally inhabits moist grasslands.

DESCRIPTION: Meadow hawkweed is a perennial weed with shallow, fibrous roots. Leaves are hairy, up to 6 inches long, spatula shaped, and almost exclusively basal. Stolons are extensive, creating a dense mat of hawkweed plants that practically eliminates other vegetation. Stems are bristly and usually leafless, although occasionally a small leaf appears near the midpoint. Stems can reach a height of 3 feet and bear up to 30, 1/2-inch flower heads near the top. Flowers are yellow and appear in late May or June. Stems and leaves exude milky juice when broken. Seeds are black, tiny, and plumed.

Meadow HawkweedDISTRIBUTION: Meadow Hawkweed is found primarily in northern Idaho and eastern Washington.

CONTROL: No biological control agents are available for meadow hawkweed. Periodical application of selective herbicides to grass pastures in the early spring and followed by nitrogen fertilizer can suppress the weed for 2 or more years.



© 1999 University of Idaho: Text and photographs for these pages from Idaho’s Noxious Weeds, by Robert H. Callihan and Timothy W. Miller (revised by Don W. Morishita and Larry W. Lass).

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