Mo. asks for help in dueling nuisance wildflower

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - Missouri conservation officials are asking for help to battle an invading wildflower.

The Department of Conversation says the plant - spotted knapweed - has taken over thousands of acres of pastures and wildlife habitat.

Spotted knapweed is a non-native plant that produces a chemical toxic to other plants and spills up to 1,000 seeds per plant.

Missouri officials say summer is the best time to go after spotted knapweed because it's most exposed.

The plants are about 2 feet tall with fringy pink blossoms. They also produce a flat rosette of leaves near the ground in their first year.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.