Common Name: Spotted Knapweed
Scientific Name: Centaurea stoebe L. ssp. micranthos (Gugler) Hayek or Centaurea maculosa
Efforts must be made to prevent seed maturation and dispersal of plants into new areas. Additionally, no transportation, propagation, or sale of these plants is allowed. Failure to comply may result in enforcement action by the county or local municipality. Minnesota Noxious Weed Law.
Spotted knapweed is a native of Europe and Asia. It was introduced to North America in the 1890s as a contaminant in agricultural seed and through soil discarded from ship ballast. It has become a serious problem of pastures and rangeland in the western United States.
Spotted knapweed prefers dry, sandy soils. It is found growing in a wide range of natural and disturbed habitats. Typically invading natural areas, pastures, forest and field margins, mining areas, and unmaintained gravel pits, it is also commonly found along roads, railways, and trails.
It is currently found throughout most of the northern half of the state and is spreading south. It is now a common weed of roadsides and pastures in Minnesota. View spotted knapweed distribution in Minnesota.
Spotted knapweed is highly invasive and, therefore, can severely decrease the biological diversity of native and agronomic habitats by reducing the availability of desirable forage for livestock operations, degrading wildlife habitats, and hindering reforestation and landscape restoration efforts. It also produces a chemical that is toxic to other plants, allowing it to spread quickly and become established.
MDA Noxious Weed Program
County Ag Inspectors