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Noxious weeds

King County, Washington

To offer a suggestion or report an error on the King County Noxious Weeds website, please contact Sasha Shaw, education specialist.

Viper's bugloss
Echium vulgare

viper's bugloss flowerThis Class B noxious weed, also known as blueweed, has a limited distribution in Washington State. The major infestations in the state are found in eastern Washington, but it is occasionally found in King County on disturbed roadsides and construction areas as well as in ornamental gardens. Control is required in King County, Washington. This species is also on the Washington quarantine list (known as the prohibited plants list) (external link) and it is prohibited to transport, buy, sell, offer for sale, or to distribute plants or plant parts, seeds in packets, blends or "wildflower mixes" of this species, into or within the state of Washington.

A member of the borage family, the bright blue flowers of this plant are found on the distinctive fiddleneck coil at the end of the flowering stems. Flowers are visible from June to August. This taprooted biennial is covered with stiff, bristly hairs and flecks of swollen purple blotches at the base of long stem hairs. Plants grow to about 32" tall and spread by seed.

This noxious weed is competitive in rangelands and in non-cropland areas. It is unpalatable and it crowds out beneficial grazing plants.

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Program offices are located at 201 S. Jackson St., Suite 600, Seattle, WA 98104. To contact staff, see the Noxious Weed Control Program Directory, send an email, or call 206-477-WEED (206-477-9333).