Common Mullein (State designated weed)

Common Mullein (State designated weed)

  • Verbascum thapsus
  • Scrophulariaceae (Figwort) family

Common mullein is a native of Asia but was introduced from Europe. It is common throughout the temperate parts of North America along river bottoms, in pastures, meadows, fence rows and waste areas, especially on gravelly soils.

Growth Habit: A tap rooted biennial, 2 to 6 feet tall (can grow to 10 feet tall).

Leaves: Large, densely woolly leaves narrow towards the apex of the plant

Flowers: Yellow, 5-petaled sessile flowers borne on large terminal spikes

Other: Common mullein is difficult to control due to the large number of long lived seeds produced.  Invasive in disturbed soils and on well-drained rocky soils.  Livestock will not eat the plant because of its woolliness. Flowering and seed production occur from June to August.

Status: State Designated Noxious Weed, Category 3 weed in Fremont County. Regional, no tolerance of further spread, control and management of current infestations and aggressive control in areas otherwise free of these weeds.

Control: Common mullein can be mechanically removed. Chemical control is effective on large infestations. FCWP offers a 40 percent Cost Share on chemicals for controlling this species. Contact your local weed and pest office for further treatment recommendations.

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