Road crews to start treating for nuisance weeds: Drivers encouraged to use caution

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet crews will begin treating for noxious and nuisance weeds throughout the state this month.

According to Transportation officials, the treatments will aid in controlling the spread of undesirable plants along state highway rights of way, to improve driver safety and ensure efficient maintenance operations.

Under state law, the Cabinet targets Johnson Grass, Giant Foxtail, Canada Thistle, Nodding Thistle, Common Teasel, Multiflora Rose, Amur Honeysuckle, Poison Hemlock, Marestail, Japanese Knotweed and Kudzu.

“Left uncontrolled, noxious weeds can grow so large that they interfere with a driver’s line of vision on highways,” said Transportation Cabinet Secretary Jim Gray. “Weed maintenance is important in preventing potential damage to pavement and embankments, as well as clogged ditches and drainage problems.”

Noxious weeds often invade and destroy the roadside turf grass, leaving these areas vulnerable to erosion. They can also smother native plants through rapid reproduction and long-term persistence.

Property owners who are actively treating noxious weeds on private property may request the eradication of nuisance weeds found on adjacent state-owned right of way. A written application must be submitted to the property owner’s local highway district office. To request an application, you can contact the appropriate district highway office. Contact information may be found here.

Drivers are reminded to use extra caution when crews spraying for weeds are out on the roads.