Biological Weed Control: Education and Implementation
The objective is to increase the agricultural community’s understanding and use of biological weed control as a sustainable weed-control tactic.
Project coordinator Noah Poritz, who has been growing and marketing a variety of insects used in the biological control of noxious weeds, plans to publish illustrated information sheets on the practice of biological weed control and the insects that attack specific target weeds. The fact sheets will be distributed to herbicide applicators and chemical dealers in Washington, Colorado, Idaho and Montana.
Poritz will also conduct field days in Park County, Mont., with the help of county agent Marty Malone, to address the biological control of the leafy spurge, Canada thistle, musk thistle and spotted knapweed that have invaded the county.
Given that the current project deadline occurs in the middle of the growing season, Poritz has asked for and received a two-month extension to complete the project and report on its findings. Instead of June 30, 2003, the project has been extended to August 31, 2003.
During the initial stages of his project, Poritz says he has learned valuable information that will enable him to tailor the grant to achieve increased education of his target audience. For example, during a field day in July 2002, he distributed to ranchers more than 6,000 biological control agents of spotted knapweed. With the extension of the project, he will be able to conduct a follow-up field day in July 2003.
What’s more, by extending the project through the growing season, he will be able to conduct other education and outreach activities that might otherwise be truncated by a mid-season finish.
Extension Noxious Weed Specialist
Montana State University
Leon Johnson Hall
Bozeman, MT 59717
Office Phone: 4069945686
Park County Extension Agent
414 E. Callendar
Livingston, MT 59047
Office Phone: 4062224156