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Yellowstone County, Montana
Noxious Weed
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Common Mullein
(Verbascum thapsus L.)


Common Mullein

Photo from Weeds of the West, revised ed.


Growth Habit: Large biennial, 2 to 6 feet tall.

Leaves: Rosette produces fuzzy leaves the first year. Leaves are alternate, overlapping one another, light green, densely woolly.

Stem: Large woody stem 2 to 6 feet tall.

Flower: Flowers are sessile, borne in long terminal spikes, sulfur yellow, 5 - lobed and more than a 1 inch in diameter.

Roots: Large taproot.

Seeds: Small, angular, brownish seeds, 1/32 inch long.

Reproduction: By Seed

Habitat: Common along river bottoms, pastures, fence lines, waste areas, it especially favors gravelly soils.

Biological Control: Mullen Moth (Cucullia vebasci) & the European curculionid weevil (Gymnaetron tetrum)

Herbicides: 2,4 - D, Cimarron, trichlopyr, & glyphosate