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spiny cocklebur (Xanthium spinosum)
ODA rating: B
 
USDA Symbol: XASP2
Oregon spiny cocklebur distribution
 
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Image courtesy of Jed Colquhoun Photo Collection, Oregon State University.
Image courtesy of Ken French, Oregon Department of Agriculture. 
Image courtesy of Jed Colquhoun Photo Collection, Oregon State University.
If images are downloaded and used from the ODA web site please be sure to credit the photographer.
 
Description
Annual; blooms in summer. Grows 4-5 feet tall. Leaves covered with short white hairs, white-veined above, 1 to 3 inches and have 2 short lobes and a 3-forked spine at the junction with the stem. Male flowers uppermost and clustered. Female flowers below male flowers and form a bur which bears a beak with hooked bristles.
 
Impacts
Spiny cocklebur is most frequently found in highly disturbed waste areas and barnyards. It surrounds many small reservoirs in Oregon. The burs of spiny cocklebur can become tangled in the hide or wool of livestock adding to the cost of the woolen product. It is moderately competative and is a nuisance in hand-harvested crops. The seeds and seedlings of spiny cocklebur are poisonous. The symptoms are anorexia, depression, nausea, and prostration. Death may occur in a few hours to three days after the symptoms are first noted.
 
Distribution in Oregon


Biological controls
No approved biological control agent is available.