The Minnesota Department of Agriculture for many years has been asking farmers and agronomists to watch for the aggressive weed Palmer Amaranth. It is well established in Iowa and other states but not in Minnesota, and we would like to keep it that way. Palmer Amaranth was first confirmed in Minnesota in 2016. It had been found in 10 Minnesota Counties and with today's news release now 11 counties. Before today all the counties were in other areas of Minnesota. Now Palmer Amaranth is much closer to home!

Palmer Amaranth Weed (MN DNR)

Today, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture confirmed Palmer Amaranth had been found in Goodhue County.

It was a crop consultant who noticed a corn herbicide used did not kill the weed. It was reported to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture conducted a site visit and found the hard-to-control pigweed in two cornfields that were managed by the same farmer. Surrounding fields were scouted and no more weeds were found.

At this time it is not known how the Palmer Amaranth got into those two fields but the investigation is continuing to try and find the source. If you see a suspicious plant "pull them out, and save them in plastic bags for genetic testing if needed. Report the find to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture's Arrest the Pest line at 1-888-545-6684 or arrest.the.pest@state.mn.us. We all need to be vigilant in trying to keep Palmer Amaranth from becoming established in Minnesota!

One female Palmer Amaranth plant can produce up to 500,000 seeds and may be resistant to many different classes or groups of herbicides. You can see in the picture it can even get taller than a corn plant. According to NDSU, Palmer Amaranth has been known to reduce yield up to 91 percent in corn and 79 percent in soybean. We do not want to have to deal with this ugly weed!

“It’s the only weed I’ve seen that can drive a farmer out of business.” - Bill Johnson, Purdue University Extension Weed Specialist

KEEP READING: The 30 Highest Paying Jobs in Minnesota