This week’s Plant of the Week is Chondrilla juncea, common name Rush Skeletonweed, which is classified as a noxious weed in British Columbia. Rush Skeletonweed is a perennial weed which can grow up to 4 ft. (1.2 m) tall. The tall, coarse stems develop from the centre of a rosette of leaves at ground level and look skeletal and lifeless, giving the plant its common name. Both stem and leaves produce a milky sap when broken.
The small yellow flowers develop in the mid-summer to fall, and mature, healthy plants can produce 1,500 flower heads and up to 20,000 seeds. Rush Skeletonweed is native to regions of Europe, Asia, and Africa. It was accidentally introduced to the United States in a shipment of animal fodder in 1914 and now can be found throughout North America. For more information visit http://www.weedsbc.ca/weed_desc/rush.html