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
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:



Selected Resources:

Back to Top

Council or Task Force

Priority Species: Knapweed
Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office. Washington Invasive Species Council.

Fact Sheet: Spotted Knapweed (Jan 2014; PDF | 801 KB)
Alberta Invasive Species Council (Canada).
See also: Fact Sheets for more information about individual invasive species, including those listed as "Prohibited Noxious" and "Noxious" under the Alberta Weed Control Act


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.

Federal Government

U.S. National Plant Germplasm System - Centaurea stoebe
USDA. ARS. National Genetic Resources Program. GRIN-Global.

Biology and Biological Control of Knapweeds, FHTET-2011-05 (2012; PDF | 45.5 MB)
USDA. FS. Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team.
See also: Invasive Species Publications for more publications

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.

International Government

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

State Government

Encycloweedia: Data Sheet - Centaureagenus
California Department of Food and Agriculture.
See also: 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.

See also: Invasive Plant Fact Sheets for plant species (trees, shrubs, vines, herbs and aquatic plants) that have impacted the state's natural lands

Field Guide: Invasive - Spotted Knapweed
Missouri Department of Conservation.

See also: Problem Plant Control (scroll to Invasive Plants section) for more information to help you identify and control most common invasive plants in Missouri

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

King County (Washington) Noxious Weed Control Program - Spotted Knapweed
King County Department of Natural Resources (Washington). Water and Land Resources Division.

Spotted Knapweed
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.


Natural Resources Series: Range - Diffuse and Spotted Knapweed
Colorado State University Extension.

Noxious Weeds of Nebraska - Spotted and Diffuse Knapweed
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.

Invasive Plant Fact Sheet - Spotted Knapweed (Nov 2011; PDF | 167 KB)
University of Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Flora Project of Morris Arboretum.
See also: Invasive Plant Fact Sheets for additional invasive plants in Pennsylvania


Noxious Weed Information - Spotted Knapweed
Colorado Weed Management Association.

Weed Identification - Spotted Knapweed
Montana Weed Control Association.


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, 2018
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