Noxious weed of the month: yellow toadflax

Photo courtesy Jamie Jones
Yellow toadflax, also known as butter and eggs, is poised to be a major threat to ecosystem health in the San Juan Mountains.

By Ethan Proud
SUN Columnist
Yellow toadflax, also known as butter and eggs, is a beautiful plant with a snapdragon-esque flower. It is native to the Mediterranean and has a bottle brush appearance of narrow leaves that can be up to 2 inches long. They either do not branch or branch sparingly, with only one to three stems per shoot.
The plant is connected through a creeping root system and most of the above-ground shoots are clones. The root system is not as extensive as some of our other perennial invaders and grows to a depth of 3 feet and spreads 10 feet laterally.
Yellow toadflax may be spread by birds when seeds become trapped in their feathers and are carried for miles before being deposited. Tillage and hand-pulling are not recommended methods of control as the entire root will not be removed. Repeated mowing can be successful, but should be done before the plant flowers to prevent seed spread. Herbicide treatments are very effective on yellow toadflax and several options are available from the county Weed and Pest Office.
Behind oxeye daisy, yellow toadflax is poised to be a major threat to ecosystem health in the San Juan Mountains. PlayCleanGo is a program that promotes healthy outdoor recreation and preventive measures for invasive weeds. Always clean your boots and tires after hiking, riding or driving in an area with yellow toadflax.
Upcoming events
Fermentation classes: Aug. 28 (vegetables), Sept. 4 (bread) and Sept. 11 (dairy). All classes are from 1 to 3 p.m. The cost is $25/per class or $60 for all three. The cost includes materials, instructor and a jar of food to go home in each class. Space is limited, sign up today, 264-5931.
Resilient Archuleta — Sept. 4, 6 p.m. at the Extension office. Watershed Enhancement Partnership efforts.
CPR and first aid classes
CPR and first aid certification classes are offered monthly by the CSU Extension office on the second Monday and Wednesday of each month from 6 to 10 p.m. Anyone needing to receive or renew certification can register by calling the Extension office at 264-5931.
We will also attempt to schedule classes on additional dates with five or more registrations. Cost for the classes is $80 for combined CPR/first aid and $55 for CPR, first aid or recertification. The type of first aid information provided will vary by the needs of the audience.
Archuleta County Weed and Pest is your local resource for managing noxious weed populations and controlling other pests.