Noxious weeds are also known as invasive weeds or, in some cases, superweeds. These weeds are a bit different than regular, everyday garden weeds in the sense that they can be more harmful, they can do more damage, or they can present risks to your garden, family, or animals.
How Is a Noxious Weed Different than a Regular Weed?
The most simple way to figure out how to tell the difference between a noxious weed and a regular weed is by looking at the definitions posted by the Weed Science Society of America. According to these esteemed weed scientists…
- A weed is any type of plant that can lead to economic loss, adversely affect human or animal health, damages the ecology, or is otherwise undesirable.
- A noxious weed, on the other hand, is a plant that has been determined by authorities at the local, state, or federal level to be a threat to public health, agriculture, recreation, wildlife, or property.
Depending on the seriousness of the noxious weed, government officials may go as far as implementing a quarantine until the weed can be removed. This is only in serious cases when a weed needs to be eliminated before it can hurt people or spread too far.
Are Noxious Weeds Invasive Weeds?
There’s a bit of confusion about whether or not noxious weeds are invasive plants. Sometimes, the two terms are used interchangeably.
However, this isn’t always the case. It depends on the geographical context of the weed. For example, a plant may not be considered noxious in the area where it grows naturally. However, if it spreads to a different ecosystem, it may cause damage and be considered both noxious and invasive.
What Are the Most Common Noxious Weeds?
The difficulty with identifying common noxious weeds is the fact that one weed might be considered noxious is one region, but not noxious in another. That makes it rather difficult to generalize.
You see, each different region may have its own guidelines for determining which plants are considered noxious and which aren’t. Orange County in California, for example, may consider certain plants noxious that aren’t considered noxious in other counties, or even at the state level in California.
Most weeds are labeled as either noxious or invasive based upon different criteria.
Invasive plants are identified by:
- The amount of money and time that farmers have to waste trying to get the weeds out of their land
- The number of native, local plants that are threatened by these invasive plants
Noxious weeds, on the other hand, are identified by quite a few different criteria. These include:
- If they’re poisonous plants
- If they can cause rashes or other health concerns, such as allergies
A few widespread examples of plants that are generally considered noxious include:
- Poison ivy
- Bittersweet nightshade
- Poison sumac
- Stinging nettle
- Bull thistle
There are many noxious weeds, and it can be tricky to identify them. If you think you have any on your property, don’t hesitate to get rid of them. Remember, though, try to use healthy methods of weed control or call a good weed control company.