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Noxious weeds have a destructive impact on Montana's landscape by displacing native plant species, increasing soil erosion, and decreasing wildlife habitat and recreational opportunities. Rangeland, pastureland, cropland, forests, and wildlands cover 92 million acres, 98% of the total land area, in Montana. These lands are vital for agricultural production and protecting the integrity of ecosystems.

The Department's Noxious Weed Programs offer resources and assistance with the management of state- and county-listed noxious weeds.

  • The Noxious Weed Free Materials: certification program provides inspections and certification of products such as hay, pellets, straw, gravel, and mulch.


**NEWS**

  • Weed Free Materials Inspector Needed in Flathead County- Position open until filled
  • Please follow the link below for more information and to apply today!
    Job Description - Noxious Weed Free Materials Inspector (21140947)

  • Open Positions for the Noxious Weed Management Advisory Committee
    • Livestock Production Representative
    • Herbicide Dealer or Application Representative
    • Biological Research and Control Interests Representative
    • Western County Weed District Representative
    • Agriculture Crop Production Representative
      • Please click on the blue button above to apply. Additional information about the Council and responsibilities please click here.

  • Petition cycle open for new weeds to list on MT Noxious Weed List    
       

Noxious Weed ID & Education

Montana has 36 state listed noxious weed species that collaboratively affect about 8.2 million acres of Big Sky Country. Both new and continued infestations of these non-native species not only reduce the productivity of cropland and rangeland, infestations of noxious weeds diminish the productivity and biological diversity of ecosystems by negatively impacting wildlife habitat and by affecting the vitality and survival of native species due to competition for space, nutrients and water.

To address noxious weeds, you first need to know how to identify the weeds we are dealing with in Montana. Weeds are most easily identified by their flower color, but sometimes you have to look at other features, including their leaf structure. Visit the Montana Weed Control Association website for information and photos to help you identify Montana's noxious weeds.

 

Noxious Weed
Identification
from MWCA

 

Noxious Weed Videos

The Ravalli County Weed District, Montana Department of Agriculture, and the Montana Weed Control Association sponsored a series of educational noxious weed awareness videos. All videos are available on the MDA YouTube Channel, or use the links below to view specific videos:

 

Noxious Weed Education

The Montana Noxious Weed Education Campaign aims outreach efforts toward educating Montana residents to become proactive in the prevention, eradication and containment of noxious weeds through ecologically based integrated weed management.

 

Access the Official
Montana Noxious Weed
Education Campaign Website

 

Shantell Frame-Martin
Montana Noxious Weed Education Campaign Coordinator

Phone: (406) 883-7375
E-mail: Shantell.Frame@montana.edu
 

 


Statewide Noxious Weed Coordination

The State Noxious Weed Coordinator submits regular Noxious Weed Coordination Reports to the Montana Environmental Quality Council (EQC). Recent reports are available to download below.


Aquatic Noxious Weed Program

Invasive weeds threaten the ecological integrity of aquatic environments in Montana. Eurasian watermilfoil, curly-leaf pondweed and flowering rush have become established in the state, and there is a high risk of invasion by other non-native aquatic plants.

These plants are highly competitive and affect fisheries, native plants, waterworks, power generation and irrigation. Increased aquatic plant biomass also impacts water quality and recreational resources.

Invasive aquatic plants are transported by hitching a ride on animals, watercraft and recreational vehicles, as well as scuba, fishing and hunting equipment.


Click Here for
the FWP
Aquatic Invasive
Species Website

 

How can you help?

Boating

Before launching and before leaving:

  • Inspect boat, trailer, and equipment.
  • Remove aquatic plants, animals, and mud.
  • Drain water from boat, motor, bilge, live wells, and bait containers.
  • Spray/rinse boats and recreational equipment with high pressure, and/or water above 140 degrees, or let recreational equipment dry for at least five days.
Fishing
  • Clean waders and boots.
  • Drain water from bait containers.
Hunting & Other Outdoor Activity
  • Inspect equipment, decoy lines, anchors, waders and pets.
  • Remove weeds/seeds by washing equipment and brushing or cleaning animals.

Montana Aquatic Noxious Weeds

Other Aquatic Plants of Concern in Montana

Guide to Montana's Freshwater Aquatic Plants

Click on the items below to download the complete guide or parts, meant to help with identification of Montana's freshwater aquatic plants.

Montana Pollutant Discharge Elimination System

State requirements regarding discharge permits have changed. Please visit the Montana Department of Environmental Quality website for information.

Aquatic Pesticide License

Application of aquatic herbicides in Montana requires a special-use license. The Montana Department of Agriculture oversees the licensing and training of aquatic pesticide applicators. Applicators who intend to treat waters with state restricted-use aquatic herbicides (xylene or acrolein) must attend a special aquatic training session and pass an Aquatic Pest Control Exam for initial certification. Training and testing is offered once a year by the Department.

The Department conducts aquatic herbicide applicator recertification training sessions periodically. These are listed with other applicator training opportunities on the Pesticides page.

More Information
About Pesticide Licensing


Biological Weed Control

Biological weed control is a long-term management technique that involves releasing natural enemies to control non-native species. Typically, insects are imported from continents where the noxious weeds originated. Insect predators are carefully tested to be sure they only attack a specific weed and are safe to release in North America.

The most successful method of weed control is an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach. IPM consists of using herbicides, biological weed control agents, grazing, mowing and other mechanical methods.

Acquiring Biological Control Insects

In Montana, several biological control agents have been successfully used to reduce infestations of noxious weeds such as leafy spurge and spotted knapweed. County weed coordinators can provide information on implementing biological control methods, and acquiring insects. See the links below for more information.

Other Contacts for Biological Weed Control

 


Noxious Weed News

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Meeting - July 28th

Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council will meet July 28th in Phillipsburg

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Meeting - July 28th

The Montana Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council will meet on July 28, 2021 from 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. in Phillipsburg, MT. An agenda will be posted soon. 

For more information, please contact Greta Dige, Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Coordinator, at (406) 444-7882 or Greta.Dige@mt.gov.  

 

Governor Gianforte Proclaims Noxious Weed Awareness Week

June 6 - 12, 2021 is Noxious Weed Awareness Week in Montana

Governor Gianforte Proclaims Noxious Weed Awareness Week

Governor Greg Gianforte proclaimed June 6 - 12, 2021 to be Noxious Weed Awareness Week! 

Established through a joint resolution (HJ17) during the 2021 legislative session, the first full week in June is an opportunity to highlight the important work taking place across the state to protect the integrity and productivity of Montana’s precious lands and resources from noxious weeds.

The Montana Department of Agriculture's Noxious Weed Program assists with weed identification and education, compiles annual statewide coordination reports, administers the Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Program, certifies forage and other materials as weed-free, and collaborates in statewide noxious weed prevention and management iniatives. Learn more at agr.mt.gov/weeds.

Documents to download

Montana Department of Agriculture Reminds Montanans to Sow Safe Seeds

Buying and planting seed from licensed dealers protects Montana from invasive species

Montana Department of Agriculture Reminds Montanans to Sow Safe Seeds

As people across the state gear up to plant their gardens this spring, the Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) is reminding growers about the importance of buying and planting seeds from licensed seed dealers to protect against invasive species and plant diseases.

“Spring is such an exciting time for agriculture in Montana, from our farmers and ranchers out in the field to the folks planting gardens in their backyard,” said Director Mike Foster. “Along with this excitement comes a responsibility to look after our state by purchasing seeds from trustworthy sources. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Department to ensure that your seeds are safe before planting them.”

Last year, residents in all 50 states received unsolicited “mystery seeds” through the mail that originated in China causing federal and state agencies to urge recipients not to plant them, and to contact their state regulatory officials to submit them for testing or dispose of them instead. Close to 150 seed packages were received in Montana and sent to USDA’s Animal and Plant Inspection Service (APHIS) for testing. A mix of ornamental, fruit and vegetable, herb and weed species were discovered and fortunately determined not to be severely hazardous. In this case, the unsolicited seeds appear to have been sent as part of a brushing scam designed to boost e-commerce rankings for companies by shipping items to unknowing individuals and then creating false profiles and fabricated positive reviews.

Whether it be as part of a brushing scam or otherwise, planting unknown or unsolicited seeds can introduce harmful pests and/or diseases. To ensure your seeds are safe, please:

  • check to confirm the seed species information is printed on the seed package
  • do not plant any seeds of unknown species or origin
  •  verify seed suppliers are licensed in MT at mtplants.mt.gov or call MDA at (406) 444-3144.

The Federal Seed Act and Montana Seed Laws require seed sellers and distributors to plainly label their packages. The MDA Seed Program ensures that seeds offered for sale in Montana are truthfully labeled for identity, purity, and viability. To learn more, visit the Montana Department of Agriculture’s web page at agr.mt.gov/SeedProgram.

Documents to download

Montana Noxious Weed Program
Phone: (406) 444-3144
E-mail: agr@mt.gov 302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Jasmine Reimer
State Weed Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-3140
E-mail: JReimer@mt.gov


Carol Bearden
Weed Program Specialist

Phone: (406) 444-7880
E-mail: CBearden@mt.gov


Andrew Lam
Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Program Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-7819
E-mail: andrew.lam@mt.gov


Greta Dige
NWTF Grant Coordinator

Phone: (406) 444-7882
E-mail: Greta.Dige@mt.gov


Noxious Weed Program Forms & Files

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