Stem

  • Generally grows 2-5 ft. tall; highly branched with numerous stems that arise from the crown
Photo of goatsrue plant
 

Leaves

  • Pinnately-compound with 5-8 pairs of leaflets; leaflets are oval to lance-shaped, 0.5-1.5 in. long and lack hair (glabrous); edges (margins) are smooth
Photo of goatsrue plant with pink flowers at the top

 

Flower

  • Purple to white, less than 0.5 in. long and clustered on stalks at tips of branches
  • Pods are 1-2 in. long and contain numerous seeds
Photo of goatsrue plant with pink flowers
 

Root

  • Non-spreading taproot; roots associate with nitrogen-fixing bacteria
Photo of goatsrue seed pods
Photo of goatsrue seed pods

 

Other

  • Grows best in moist areas; often found in fencelines, pastures, roadsides, marshy areas and along waterways; not known to occur in Nevada 
  • Native to the Middle East; introduced to northern Utah as a potential forage plant but was found to be unpalatable and highly toxic to livestock
  • Listed on the Federal Noxious Weed List
Photo of goatsrue plant with pink flowers

 

Control

  • Hand removal of individual plants can limit spread of small infestations; mowing and tillage (particularly shallow tillage) are NOT effective
  • Apply 2,4-D, dicamba or triclopyr to actively growing plants; apply aminocyclopyrachlor, aminopyralid, chlorsulfuron, metsulfuron or picloram pre- or post emergence
Blecker, L., Creech, E., Dick, J., Gephart, S., Hefner, M., Kratsch, H., Moe, A., Schultz, B. 2020, Nevada Noxious Weed Field Guide – Goatsrue, Extension, University of Nevada, Reno, Field Guide

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