The Dangers of Myrtle Spurge: How a Decorative Plant Has Become a Destructive Invasion in Salt Lake City’s Natural Areas

Beware: Myrtle Spurge Plant Poses Health Risks, Says Salt Lake County Health

Invasive and harmful weed myrtle spurge is spreading rapidly in natural areas of Salt Lake City. The plant was initially introduced as a decorative plant but has since caused significant damage to both plants and wildlife. It’s crucial for residents to avoid contact with the sap, which can cause rashes, redness, swelling, and blisters.

Myrtle spurge has blue-green triangular-shaped leaves with milky latex sap and small flowers with yellow bracts during spring and summer months. This noxious weed spreads through seeds that can be projected up to 15 feet. It’s essential to take proper safety precautions when removing this plant from natural areas to prevent further harm to the ecosystem.

The state of Utah classifies myrtle spurge as a noxious weed and restricts its sale. However, despite being advertised as deer-resistant and drought-tolerant, this plant is invading foothills and wild lands along the Wasatch Front at an alarming rate. Residents must be aware of its characteristics and potential dangers to help prevent its further spread.

If you have any information or concerns related to myrtle spurge or any other topic, feel free to reach out to the KSL NewsRadio team for further investigation. Stay informed and help protect your community from invasive species like myrtle spurge.

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