Orange hawkweed: Orange hawkweed, a green weed with spiky leaves and a bright orange flower.

Folks up in Alaska are arguing over how to deal with the orange hawkweed. A non-native plant that was first brought to Alaska some 40 years ago, the orange hawkweed has now taken over some parts of the state. Knowing how invasive species have damaged the environment elsewhere, conservation officials have tried to the weed from spreading, in part by spraying weed killer.

This has upset some local citizens. They object to the use of toxic chemicals in the environment. They also feel that the weed poses little threat. They have even encouraged people to grow the weed in their gardens.

This led officials to draft a bill that would outlaw the plant. If the law is enacted, people growing the weed could face a hefty fine, or even jail time.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

the flowers are really pretty!!! i want some just like them in my bedroom!!!! haha thanks!!! put some more pretty floewrs on there!!! thank you\r\n love ya lots\r\n me!!\r\n\r\n\r\n\r\n

posted on Thu, 02/09/2006 - 12:56pm
bryan kennedy's picture

There seems to be two things going on here. Oddly enough the people who are against the use of a toxic chemical in their environment are also supporting the growth of a nasty invasive species that could harm natural wetlands. But, the people who are out to protect the wetland are advocating the use of a nasty weed killer.

This is a perfect example of how education and public engagement is an important part of any governmental environmental program.

posted on Fri, 02/10/2006 - 11:34am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Invasive species just need a little time to acquire some natural enemies. Let em grow! Weed killer is nasty stuff that will only harm other insects, birds, and native plants. Plus they are kind of pretty. . . .

posted on Mon, 02/13/2006 - 2:32pm
Debbie's picture
Debbie says:

it is a bad weed,it does take over and kills every think around it.But there has to be a better way of killing it than spraying,disking should help in the meadows.????

posted on Wed, 01/28/2009 - 10:51am

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