West Seattle, Washington
From the WSB inbox, two reader reports about plants to steer clear of:
FOXTAIL: J sent the photo, hoping to warn pet owners about “the dangers of foxtail grass, which is becoming more ubiquitous every spring and summer around West Seattle. The awns can embed themselves into an animal through the skin, nose, ears, or eyes, and once they are in, they can cause infection or even death. I see huge patches of foxtail right around many of our dog-friendly apartment buildings, as well as in parks and private lawns. (In early June) I spotted it all along the beachfront path at Lincoln Park. Pet owners should clear any foxtail on their private property, know to avoid it while out and about, and be able to spot the symptoms that require veterinary care. A good primer is here.” The photo is from the Lincoln Park sighting that J mentioned.
HEMLOCK: Bronwyn reports this “large patch of hemlock next to the sidewalk on the east side of 36th Ave SW on Seattle city property, Lander is the closest cross street. Neighbors often forage for blackberries here”:
Hemlock, which can be deadly, is on the “control required” list of weeds in King County – see the full list here; you can report them here.
Thank you so much for this very useful information. My sister had to have her dog sedated so they could remove a foxtail from his nose.
What’s the best way to remove from the yard? Our clump is getting bigger every year.
I use a mattock https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mattock to remove weeds and their roots. A mattock is sturdier than a shovel. For weeds with thorns, pigskin or goatskin gloves are best.
but one important thing – once you remove them, DON’T compost them, leave them on the ground, or put them in your yard-waste bin – throw them in the garbage, in a strong plastic bag.
The flyer you link to says you can use municipal (not home) compost. King County’s compost program says they are able to accept noxious weeds.
Second the sedation story. After 3 weeks and 2 different vets, finally the 3rd vet sedated my pup and found a foxtail deep within his ear canal. I felt so bad for his pain, and as well, my pocketbook took a hit.
Poison hemlock spread like crazy into the disturbed areas along Delridge that the city did not replant after construction. They landscaped the medians but did not redo landscaping in the planting strips.
OMG that’s poison hemlock, I see it in a lot of areas and never knew it was poisonous! As for the Foxtail I remember as kids we’d come home from playing and have it stuck in our socks and it’d be harder than heck to pull it out of them, again never knew it was poisonous. Thank you for the info.
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