Weed Management Program

What Are Weeds?

Often weeds are defined as "plants out of place" or as a plant growing someplace that you might not want it to grow. But today, weeds are considered more than just plants out of place in wildland situations, they are non native, invasive species that can displace native plants and take over an entire area making it less valuable for native wildlife, grazing animals and recreation. Most of the non native invasive plants that we manage today are from Europe or Asia, and arrived in our country in the mid to late 1800s. A few of them were brought in on purpose because they reminded the new settlers of their old countries. Most were accidentally introduced as contaminants of seed and grain or in cargo or ballast of ships. Many of these species remained innocuous for many years as small populations on the sides of roads or trails and were not considered problems by most people. But now they are beginning to increase exponentially, causing serious, often permanent damage to our public lands. BLM's National Weed Team has developed a BLM National List of Non Native Invasive Species that we try to manage on public lands in the western United States. Many State and County governments in the West have designated noxious weed lists. Through cooperative efforts, BLM in Colorado often places management focus on county listed noxious weeds. In 1997, Colorado Department of Agriculture updated the Colorado State Noxious Weed List.

BLM Colorado Weed Management Program

BLM Colorado's Weed Management Program is based on our national Strategy, Partners Against Weeds. This national document outlines seven goals and actions that are required to implement the goal. The goals are: prevention and detection; education and awareness, inventory, planning, integrated weed management, coordination, and monitoring, evaluation, research and technology transfer.

We have been trying to build our integrated weed management program in Colorado through cooperation with county weed programs, building on the ground Weed Management Area Partnerships and by working with others to produce weed education and awareness materials. We also have an emphasis on preventing weeds from spreading to new locations in the actions we permit, and in the way we perform our duties everyday. Each BLM Field Office in Colorado has a designated Weed Coordinator who can provide information on local projects.

You Can Help!

Volunteers make a difference in our ability to manage weeds. Check with your local BLM office about opportunities to help with weed management.

Invasive Weed Focus

We will try to update this section of the web page regularly to provide you with information on a new invasive plant species. Check back often to learn about many of non native invasive plants that threaten Colorado.

Yellow StarthistleThe current featured weed is Yellow Starthistle. It is known as an overwhelming problem in Northern California, Oregon and Idaho, but Yellow Starthistle was not believed to be established in Colorado. 

Now it has been reported several times in Colorado in Mesa County, Montrose County, Rio Blanco County, Boulder County and Jefferson County within the last three years. If you see Yellow Starthistle, please contact your county weed program or Eric Lane, Weed Coordinator for the State of Colorado. This featured web site is from the University of California - Davis.

Weed Education Materials

Colorado BLM tries to work with partners as often as possible in providing weed education materials for agency employees and for the public. We work on a wide variety of projects from brochures and posters to educational materials for grade school children. We work on single species issues such as purple loosestrife or on multi species projects such as the Colorado weed calendar. We also try to incorporate appreciation of our native Colorado flora when we provide information on non native invasive plants.

Other Weed Management Information Sites

Weed Free Hay