New Invasive Weed in Minnesota Could Threaten Crops
UNDATED -- An invasive weed which has been spreading across the midwest has now been discovered in Minnesota. Palmer Amaranth, also known as Palmer Pigweed has been discovered on a farm in Yellow Medicine County.
The noxious weed is an aggressive plant which can dramatically reduce corn and soybean yields once it takes hold.
U-of-M Extension Weed Scientist Jeff Gunsolus says Palmer Pigweed can grow 2-3 inches-per-day, reach 6-8 feet tall, each plant can produce up to 500,000 seeds, and it's resistant to herbicides.
It has been spreading across the midwest for years and has been confirmed in 28 other states. Tony Cortilet is the Noxious Weed Program Coordinator for the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. He says this fast growing weed has been as close as Iowa and South Dakota before now.
Officials are asking farmers to scout their fields for the weed and report any suspicious findings.
Photos, locations, and contact information can be sent by using the website "arrest the pest".