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

Weed Research

Looking For The Latest Research Articles on Weeds?

Visit the MWCA Library for a complete listing of weed research submitted to our organization. Do you know of a great article we should include? Please review our policy on posting submissions for guidelines and further information.

Research Position

The Montana Weed Control Association encourages relevant and timely research of noxious weeds in Montana, as well as for researchers to report  their findings in laymen terms. Each year a committee from the Association reviews Trust Fund research grants prior to their review from the Trust Fund Council.  The MWCA has also encouraged both the Center for Invasive Species and Montana State University to provide  research projects in terms land managers can easily understand.

The MWCA also awards a middle and high school monetary award to the winning noxious weed project at the state level in the spring of each year. Many other counties also provide monetary awards for their local area science fair competitions. Please check with your county weed coordinators and local area watersheds for more information regarding these awards. The MWCA Coordinator Support Committee, representing the Montana county weed coordinators, has and will continue to provide research ideas and science fair ideas for all levels of Montana’s scientists and researchers.

Ideas For Research From Our Members

“I realize that Cheat Grass is not listed on the State Plan (may be on several counties) but after several years of drought, poor farming practices, over-grazing, fires, etc, it is becoming a serious problem and one that we are ever increasingly asked to assist with (on rangeland, pasture, after fires on roadsides, right-of-ways, etc).   I know some work has been done with ‘Journey’, Roundup, Plateau, and other chemicals, as well as management, reseeding, etc.   I would like to see a bit more work in this area, as it definitely affects every county and has a serious impact on ranchers, conservation planners, small acre landowners, etc.    Just a thought from Meagher County.” Otto Ohlson

There is a need out there for a laymen version of biocontrol ID – if it were patterned after the Weed ID book… something simple with photos and descriptions of biocontrol insects available and where to get them. And we can’t forget the needs those agents require to get established so landowners don’t believe they can just grab a handful and throw them out and they’ll work their little magic! – Becky Kington

Here are a few ideas for research projects. Assess the interactive effects of control methods such as biological insects and chemical applications. Purple loosestrife seed viability after passage through deer gut. Effects of timing and rate of herbicide application on weed seed viability. Effects of mowing on spotted knapweed seed production. – D. Eric Hansen, Cascade County Weed Coordinator

I think we need to look a revegation after weed control. The State is so different when it comes to environment what works in the West won’t work in the Southwest or East.  Jack Eddi, Beaverhead County Weed Coordinator

One research project that would greatly help out Lake County with our aquatic grant work would be the seed viability of Yellow Flag Iris. We have roughly 1,300 miles of irrigation canals and about 10% of Lake County is surface water. To my knowledge no one in the industry has an exact idea for the viability of Iris seed. The biggest problem we have with this particular grant is with regrowth from the seed source, and the question is brought up every year at the grant hearing’s. Monica Porkony with the CSK Tribes had talked to Jane Mangold recently about maybe doing something with MSU but I’m not sure exactly what they have come up with. Currently our Yellow Flag Iris grant covers approx. 500 acres and the focal points are the perennial streams and irrigation canal, starting at the headwaters and moving downstream. Almost all 1,300 miles of canal and most of the streams are infested to some extent with Iris, but we feel that further expansion of the grant is futile until we can gain some knowledge as to seed viability. Just an idea! – Tom Benson, Lake County Weed Coordinator


Science Fair Awards

Montana Weed Control Association

  • $100 award to Middle School level best noxious weed project at the state level
  • $100 award to High School level best noxious weed project at the state level

Madison Valley Ranchlands Group Weed Committee

  • $100 at the Ennis science fair
  • $100 at the Butte science fair
  • $100 at the state science fair.