An annual with generally prostrate stems radiating in all directions from a central taproot. Main stems are usually 12 to 18 inches long with shorter secondary branches. All stems are somewhat fleshy and pliable, nearly smooth, and usually red to purple. Leaves are approximately 1/2 inch wide and oval, with the tip broader than the base. Flowers are in small congested clusters in the leaf axils. Long terminal flower spikes are absent. Seeds are shiny, black, lens-shaped and approximately twice the width of tumble pigweed seeds. Prostrate pigweed was possibly introduced from tropical America, adapting well to our area. It occurs mostly in disturbed or cultivated soils, and is often associated with tumble pig weed. it is a common garden weed.
Chenopodiaceae (goosefoot family)
This plant is an annual, 4 to 24 inches tall, branched from the base, with illsmelling foliage. Leaves are deeply lobed and may have short pubescence. Flowers resemble those of potato and tomato and are small, have white petals and a somewhat enlarging calyx and are arranged in groups of three. Fruits are green. Cutleaf nightshade is native to North America east of the Cascade Mountains to the Great Plains and is a weed of waste places and cultivated fields. The plant contains toxic alkaloids. Cutleaf nightshade is resistant to many commonly used herbicides.
Field pennycress is an annual; 6 to 18 inches tall; basal leaves lanceolate, simple, entire to loved, inflorescence a raceme. Petals are white, in clusters on the ends of branches; fruit a pod, circular in outline, obviously winged, rounded, deeply notched at the top, seeds 2 or more on each chamber. Field pennycress was introduced from Europe. It is a very troublesome weed in grain fields and is also found growing in waste places, roadsides and other disturbed areas. A strong odor is associated with this plant causing dairy animals eating field pennycress to produce a bitter-flavored milk. Field pennycress flowers from late spring to early summer.
Downy brome is an annual or winter annual, 4 to 30 inches tall, reproducing by seed. Leaf sheaths and flat blades are densely covered with soft hair. Ligules are short. Inflorescence is dense, slender, usually drooping, 1-sided, 2 to 6 inches long. Spikelets are nodding, slender 3/8 to 3/4 inch long. Awns are 3/8 to 5/8 inch long, usually purplish at maturity. Downy brome was introduced from the Mediterranean region in packing material and first found near Denver, Colorado. It is now widely distributed throughout North America and is common along road sides, waste areas, misused pastures and rangelands, and cultivated crop, areas. Although downy brome is considered an invader, on certain intermountain ranges it has become the primary green forage utilized by livestock. The plant competes with more desirable perennial grasses for moisture because of it winter and early spring growth habit. After maturity it becomes a nuisance and a fire hazard. It is also a common crop seed contaminant very difficult to separate from grass seed.
Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Poaceae (Grass family)
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