Purple loosestrife

Purple Loosestrife

Scientific name: Lythrum salicaria

Common names: Purple loosestrife

Description: Purple loosestrife is a perennial growing to 10 feet tall that is usually found in wet locations. It is characterized by four-sided stems, distinctive magenta flower spikes, and clump forming root wads. Purple loosestrife can be confused with the similar looking native plants of hardhack (Spirea douglasii) and fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium).

Impact: Purple loosestrife can form dense stands in wetlands, displacing native plants and crucial habitat for wildlife. Dense stands of loosestrife can also alter the hydrology of wetlands by changing water flows. It can reproduce through the spread of vegetative material and the production of millions of buoyant seeds per plant. If you come across purple loosestrife in the county, please contact our office at 503-325-4571.

Source: KingCounty.gov

For more information, please visit the Noxious Weed resources at KingCounty.gov: http://www.kingcounty.gov/services/environment/animals-and-plants/noxious-weeds/weed-identification/purple-loosestrife.aspx