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Noxious Weed Control


What Are Noxious Weeds?

Current Weed List

Weed Classifications


Weed Fact Sheets




Report Noxious Weeds

Noxious Weed Control Board

Weed Map - Whatcom County

Boat Inspections


What Are Noxious Weeds?


Noxious (nok´shəs). adj. 1.Harmful or injurious to health or physical well-being.

English Holly invasive, not "noxious"

In the State of Washington, noxious weeds are non-native plants that have been introduced to Washington from other parts of the world. Because of their aggressive growth and lack of natural enemies in the state, these species can be highly destructive, competitive or difficult to control. These exotic species can reduce crop yields, destroy native plant and animal habitat, damage recreational opportunities, clog waterways, lower land values, create erosion problems and fire hazards, and poison humans and livestock.


Spotted Knapweed

spotted knapweed flower


In Washington State, "noxious weed" is a legally defined term. The Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board determines which plants are placed on the Washington State Noxious Weed List (WAC 16-750). These plants are non-native, aggressive and invasive, but with the potential to be eradicated or controlled in the state. For example, dandelion is a non-native, invasive plant. However, it is so widespread, it will never be eradicated or adequately controlled within the state. Therefore, it is not on the noxious weed list.


The Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board adopts a State Noxious Weed List each year (WAC 16-750) . The list categorizes weeds into three major classes: A, B, and C according to the seriousness of the threat they pose to the state or a region of the state. The Whatcom County Noxious Weed Control Board then holds a public hearing to adopt the county list. The Whatcom County Noxious Weed List is made up of all Class A weeds, Class B-designates, and any selections by the County Board from the Class B or Class C weed list. Any Class A or Class B-designates on the Washington State List are mandatory for adoption and  control at the county level.

Samish Way before removal of smooth hawkweed: Samish Way after removal of smooth hawkweed:
Roadside before removal of hawkweed Roadside after removal of hawkweed