Random invasive species images that represents what NISIC does
USDA.gov NAL NISIC Sudden oak death Formosan subterranean termite Yellow star thistle Giant African snail Cactus moth Purple loosestrife
HomeAbout National Invasive Species Information Center (NISIC)News and EventscouncilHelpContact Us
 Search the National Invasive Species Information Center
Search all USDA
Advanced Search
Search Tips
Browse by Geography
United States
Browse by Subject
Aquatic Species
Economic Impacts
Laws and Regulations
Manager's Tool Kit
Resource Library
You are here: Home / Plants / Species Profiles / Spotted Knapweed
Species Profiles

Spotted Knapweed

Spotted Knapweed

Scientific name: Centaurea stoebe L. subsp. micranthos (Gugler) Hayek (ITIS)

Synonyms: Centaurea biebersteinii DC., Centaurea maculosa auct. non Lam. (ITIS)

Common name: Spotted knapweed

Click image to enlarge

Selected Resources

Native To: Europe (Zouhar 2001)

Date of U.S. Introduction: Late 1800s (Zouhar 2001)

Means of Introduction: Accidentally through contaminated seed or ballast (Zouhar 2001)

Impact: Crowds out native species and forage for livestock (Zouhar 2001)

Current U.S. Distribution:

  • Invasive Species Maps
    USDA. FS. Northern Research Station.
    Maps are organized for 43 invasive plant species into five categories: trees, shrubs, vines, herbs, and grasses. Select the desired species to view the distribution information for northern states.
  • Early Detection & Distribution Mapping System (EDDMapS) - Spotted Knapweed
    University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.
    Provides state, county, point and GIS data. Maps can be downloaded and shared.



Selected Resources:

Back to Top


Fact Sheet: Spotted Knapweed (Jan 2014; PDF | 794 KB)
Alberta Invasive Plants Council (Canada).


Alaska Exotic Plants Information Clearinghouse (AKEPIC): Species Biography - Spotted Knapweed (Feb 7, 2011; PDF | 148 KB)
University of Alaska - Anchorage. Alaska Center for Conservation Science.
See also: Non-Native Plant Species List for additional factsheets (species biographies) and species risk assessment reports of non-native species present in Alaska and also non-native species currently not recorded in Alaska (potential invasives).

Invasive Plant Atlas of the United States - Spotted Knapweed
University of Georgia. Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health.

Invasive Species Compendium - Centaurea stoebe subsp. micranthos
CAB International.

Global Invasive Species Database - Centaurea biebersteinii (herb)
IUCN. Species Survival Commission. Invasive Species Specialist Group.


Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) - Centaurea stoebe
USDA. ARS. National Genetic Resources Program.

Biology and Biological Control of Knapweed (Apr 2005, 3rd Ed; PDF | 2.85 MB)
USDA. FS. Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team.

Fire Effects Information System (FEIS) - Centaurea maculosa
USDA. FS. Rocky Mountain Research Station. Fire Sciences Laboratory.

PLANTS Database - Spotted Knapweed
USDA. NRCS. National Plant Data Center.

Weeds in Australia - Spotted Knapweed (Centaurea stoebe subsp. micranthos)
Australian Government. Department of the Environment.


Encycloweedia: Data Sheet - Centaurea genus
California Department of Food and Agriculture.
Included on California's noxious weed list; see Encycloweedia: Program Details for additional resources.

Noxious Weed Species - Spotted & Hybrid Knapweed
Colorado Department of Agriculture. Conservation Services Division. Noxious Weed Program.

Invasive Plants in Pennsylvania: Black, Brown and Spotted Knapweed (PDF | 1.2 MB)
Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

Class B Noxious Weed: Spotted Knapweed
Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board.

Best Management Practices: Spotted Knapweed (Feb 2010; PDF | 303 KB)
King County (Washington). Noxious Weed Control Program.

Spotted Knapweed
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.


Diffuse and Spotted Knapweed
Colorado State University. Cooperative Extension.

Spotted and Diffuse Knapweed - Noxious Weeds of Nebraska (PDF | 1.11 MB)
University of Nebraska - Lincoln. Cooperative Extension.

Introduced Species Summary Project - Spotted Knapweed
Columbia University. Center for Environmental Research and Conservation.

Know Your Knapweeds
North Dakota State University. Extension Service.

Ohio Perennial & Biennial Weed Guide - Spotted Knapweed
Ohio State University. Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Spotted Knapweed (PDF | 167 KB)
University of Pennsylvania. Morris Arboretum.


Noxious Weed Information - Spotted Knapweed (B List)
Colorado Weed Management Association.

Weed Identification - Spotted Knapweed
Montana Weed Control Association.

BioBullies - Spotted Knapweed
Natural Biodiversity (Western Pennsylvania).

Spotted Knapweed
Plant Conservation Alliance. Alien Plant Working Group.

Spotted Knapweed - Aliens Among Us
Royal British Columbia Museum (Canada).


Integrated Taxonomic Information System. Centaurea stoebe ssp. micranthos. [Accessed Mar 22, 2015].

Zouhar, K. 2001. Centaurea maculosa. In: Fire Effects Information System. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory.

Back to Top
Last Modified: Jun 16, 2016
Bookmark and Share
I Want To
    Read Recent News Articles
    Find Management Plans
    Locate Images
    Find Experts

More ...

    Species Profiles
    Discussion Groups
    Economic Impacts
    Educational Resources
    Image Galleries
    Frequently Asked Questions
    What You Can Do
Media Help
 To view PDF files, you must have Adobe® Acrobat® installed on your computer.

To view multimedia files, you must have Adobe® Flash® installed on your computer.

 NISIC Home | NAL Home | USDA | AgNIC | Agricultural Research Service | Web Policies and Important Links | Site Map
FOIA | Accessibility Statement| Privacy Policy | Non-Discrimination Statement | Information Quality | USA.gov | White House