Seasonal Noxious Weed Bulletin & Land Ambassador Highlight
Welcome to the seasonal Noxious Weed Educational Bulletin.
As a means to increase public awareness of noxious weeds and how to eradicate them, as well as celebrate landowners who go above and beyond in stewarding their lands through the effective management of noxious weed populations, Whidbey Island Conservation District partners with the Island County Noxious Weed Program on a seasonal quarterly Weed Bulletin - which in 2021 has evolved to include an interactive StoryMap that includes information about noxious weed projects taking place on publicly owned lands by Island County, and endeavors taken on by private landowners.
Check out the current StoryMap below and join us in thanking this season's land ambassadors!
Current Issue: Summer 2021
“We love nature’s forests but understand that a healthy forested parcel needs the care of ongoing maintenance,” shared Dawn. “Being new residents of Washington . . . there was a lot to learn for that care. Reading up on Scotch Broom, we learned that it displaces native and beneficial plants that could cause loss of open forest land. Additionally, we read that its seeds are toxic to livestock and horses and that human poisoning has been reported. Definitely not good for forestry or livestock so it cannot be good for other wildlife or for my puppy either, right? Best removed!”
-Dawn Sherman, Langley
Island County Noxious Weeds General Information
Noxious weeds are non-native plants that, once established, are highly destructive, competitive and difficult to control. They have economic and ecological impacts and are very difficult to manage once they get established. Some are toxic or a public health threat to humans and animals, others destroy native and beneficial plant communities. To help protect the state's resources and environment, the Washington State Noxious Weed Board adopts a state weed list each year (Chapter 16-750 WAC), in accordance with the state noxious weed law (Chapter 17.10 RCW). Noxious weeds are separated into classes A, B, and C based on distribution, abundance, and level of threat (how dangerous the plants is to humans, animals, private and public lands, and native habitats). The goal of the state weed law is to prevent the spread of new and recently introduced weeds while it is still feasible to do so. Class A weeds are the most limited in distribution and therefore the highest priority for control. Class B and C weeds vary in priority based on local distribution and impacts. Not all weeds are classified as noxious weeds in Washington State and only species that are not native to the state are considered for noxious weed listing. The Island County Noxious Weed Control Board is appointed by the Board of Island County Commissioners to carry out the mandates of the Washington State noxious weed control law, Chapter 17.10 RCW. The board members are volunteers who reside in Island County and who have an interest in and knowledge about agriculture and/or the natural resources of the county. Each board member represents one of five Island County weed districts.
Each year, the Board adopts the Island County Noxious Weed List, which specifies which noxious weeds property owners are required to control in the county. The county weed list includes all Class A weeds on the state noxious weed list, all Class B weeds designated by the state for control in the county, and any additional Class B or C weeds that are designated by the county weed board for required control in the county. All Class A, B and C weeds on the county weed list need to be controlled by the property owner.
Property owners are required to control Class A weeds and any Class B or C weeds that are designated by the state or selected by the county weed board for control in their area. "Control" as defined in WAC 16-750 means to prevent the dispersal of all propagating parts capable of forming a new plant. Class A weeds need to be eradicated or removed entirely and Class B and C weeds designated or selected for an area need to be controlled to prevent their spread.