Working together to strengthen and support noxious weed management efforts in Montana.

Ranunculus acris

MSU Report for the Montana Noxious Weed Trust Fund Advisory Council

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013


This report for the Montana Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council was assembled in compliance with the Montana Noxious Weed Trust Fund Act and Administrative Rules which require an annual report from the Montana Agricultural Experiment Station and Montana State University Extension Service on current projects and future plans. This report is a compilation of major weed science research and education activities conducted by MSU over the past three years and includes highlights of funded Montana Noxious Weed Trust Fund grants as well as comprehensive reporting of all weed science research products and education funding and activities.

Montana Noxious Weed Trust Fund Projects 2010–2012

  • Biological Control of Common Tansy and Oxeye Daisy, Jeff Littlefield
  • Biological Control of Invasive Hawkweed and Tansy Ragwort, Jeff Littlefield
  • Biological Control of Russian Knapweed, Jeff Littlefield
  • Biological Control of Whitetop and Perennial Pepperweed,Jeff Littlefield
  • Can Biological Control and Targeted Sheep Grazing be Integrated to Suppress Spotted Knapweed?, Jeff Mosley
  • Cheatgrass Ecology and Integrated Management, Jane Mangold
  • Continental Divide Invasive Weed Barrier Zone, Kim Goodwin
  • Establishing and Monitoring Insectaries for Yellow Toadflax Biocontrol, David Weaver
  • Herbicide Resistance Extension Information for Montana Producers, William Dyer
  • Identifying and Testing Candidate Agents for Russian Olive Biocontrol, David Weaver
  • Implementing EDRR in Montana Using the INVADERS Database, Jane Mangold
  • Integration of Pathogens, Sheep, and Herbicides to Manage Cheatgrass, Fabian Menalled
  • Missouri River Watershed Coalition Coordination, Elizabeth Galli-Noble
  • Rangeland Revegetation Revisited, Jane Mangold        Saltcedar Effects on Mycorrhizal Fungal Communities and Screening of Native Species for Restoration, Erik Lehnhoff
  • Tall Buttercup Ecology and Integrated Management, Jane Mangold
  • Weed Free Borders Protection Program, Kim Goodwin
  • Weed Management Certification Program, Jane Mangold
  • Weed Seedling Identification Guide, Jane Mangold

Download a copy of the complete report 2013 MSU Annual Report to the MNWTF

Tall Buttercup – MSU July Monthly Weed Post

Friday, July 6th, 2012


Tall buttercup is one of those weeds that can be toxic to grazing animals, especially cattle.   Animals usually avoid it because it has a bitter taste.   Learn more about this weed and how to identify it,  by reading the new Monthly Weed Post.  Download and this new publication from Montana State University.

Visit the MWCA Weed ID page for details about tall buttercup. Contact your local weed coordinator if you think you find it in your area.

Ecology and Management of Tall Buttercutp

Friday, September 16th, 2011


By Jim Jacobs, Plant Materials Specialist, NRCS, Bozeman, Montana; Melissa Graves, Weeds Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Specialist, Montana State University; Jane Mangold, Extension Invasive Plant Specialist, Montana State University, Bozeman, Montana


Tall buttercup is a perennial forb native to central and northeastern Europe where it is a weed of old pastures and hay meadows. Stems grow up to three feet tall (about one meter) with deeply-lobed leaves (three- to five-lobes) on the lower stem and leaves reduced in size with three to four narrow segments on the upper stem. Flowers are bright yellow and about one inch (2.5 centimeters) in diameter. (See Figure 1.) Tall buttercup reproduces both by seed production and by short splitting rhizomes. First found in the Bozeman area in Gallatin County in 1916, it currently is reported from 23 counties in western and central Montana. Ingestion of tall buttercup by grazing animals causes blistering of the lips and tongue, intestinal disorders, and potentially fatal ventricular fibrillation and respiratory failure as a result of the enzymatic breakdown of ranunculin, a glycoside toxin.

Tall buttercup is listed on the Milestone® and Clarity® herbicide labels. It can also be controlled using the non-selective herbicide glyphosate. Consult with your extension agent or county weed coordinator for herbicide recommendations in your area. Always read and follow label instructions. Currently there are no biological control insects available to manage tall buttercup. However, research shows the Sclerotinia fungus reduced dry weight in dairy pastures. Mowing may reduce seed production. Tall buttercup generally increases under grazing, including sheep grazing. Fertilization of pastures does not affect tall buttercup, but it may promote grasses.

Download a copy of the complete publication that includes more information and pictures.