New weed invades county

Woolly burdock produces a purple flower and a whirl of cobwebby bracts.
Woolly burdock found at Heart River waste transfer site

Richard Froese
South Peace News

A sample of the invasive species woolly burdock was found at the Heart River waste transfer site in Big Lakes County, states a notice on the county website on July 20.

County officers continue to attempt to find the source, says agricultural fieldperson Sheila Kaus.

“We’ll keep on top of it, we’ll eventually find it,” Kaus says.

The incident comes after pale yellow iris was discovered in the county on June 23.

Woolly burdock is a tall biennial, reaching as much as 2.5 m.

The fleshy tap-root can grow up to 1 m long.

The stout, grooved, rough stem has multiple branches.

Basal leaf stems are hollow or solid.

It has large [up to 40 cm] alternating, heart- shaped leaves that have a long petiole, very wavy margins and are pubescent on the underside.

The flowers are purple and grouped in globular flower head, united in clusters. The flower head is surrounded by a whorls of bracts, each curving to form a Velcro-like hook, allowing them to be carried long distances on the fur of animals.

Bracts are densely cobwebby.

Other key identifiers include;

-Large plant and leaves.
-Lower leaf stalks are both hollow and soli.
-Whorl of cobwebby bracts under 2.5 cm in diameter.
-Long stalked flowers.
-Flowers clumped along stem with branches in groups.

Anyone who observes the invasive species, phone Kaus at [780] 523-5955.


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