Common Noxious Weeds in Alberta – Leafy Spurge

Leafy Spurge is a perennial that spreads by seed and creeping roots and forms dense stands.  It is taller and leaves are longer than Cypress Spurge and has less branching in the upper part of the plant.  All plant parts contain a milky juice which can cause skin irritations.

Perennial weeds grow from root stalks year after year.  Perennial weeds spread by seeds and roots, and therefore the entire plant must be destroyed.

Classification:  Noxious Weed

Recognizable features:

Stem:  Thickly clustered, hairless, up to 1 meter tall

Leaves:  Alternate to spirally arranged, numerous, hairless, attached directly to the stem, narrow, margins smooth or entire, up to 7 cm long

Flowers:  Greenish-yellow, petals and sepals are absent, clustered with 1 female flower surrounded by several male flowers held within a cup-like structure, subtended by 2 green leaf-like bracts

Distinguishing Leafy Spurge from Cypress Spurge

Leafy Spurge is commonly confused with Cypress Spurge.  However, Leafy Spurge is easily distinguished as the plant is taller and leaves are longer, with less branching in the upper part of the plant.

Green Oasis offers a variety of weed control services to help you get rid of those pesky weeds including 3 lawn care packages.

Contact your local office to learn more:

Calgary:                                                                Red Deer:

Tel:  403-206-9900                                             Tel:   403-358-3339

Email: CALGARY@GREENOASIS.CA               Email: REDDEER@GREENOASIS.CA

Information compliments of Agricultural Industry, AAA Fieldmen, Environment, Health & Safety Handbook.

For more information on Leafy Spurge, check out this fact sheet issued by the Alberta Invasive Species Council at www.abinvasives.ca – Leafy Spurge Fact Sheet.