(Tribulus Terrestris)

AKA caltrop, goathead, or devil’s thorn

Puncturevine (Tribulus terrestris) is a List C species and is a part of the Caltrop family (Zygophyllaceae).

Flowers are small and yellow, which after pollination, produces woody burs that can puncture bike tires and injure animals and people. Puncturevine only reproduces via seeds.

This plant grows from a singular woody tap root and stays low and creeps along the ground often forming mats. Stems are reddish-brown spreading from a central crown.

Seeds can remain in the seed bank for up to 3-6 years and sprout from early spring to late summer. Puncturevine will flush after a heavy rain.

Puncturevine is often found in disturbed habitats such as cultivated crops, orchards, vineyards, and rights-of-way.

Originally this plant is native to Europe’s Mediterranean region and is classified as a noxious weed in the western United States and Australia.

Colorado Dept. of Agriculture
Washington Noxious Weed Control Board

Photo Credits
Eric Coombs
D. Walters and C. Southwick
Karan A. Rawlins

Weed of the Month is a joint effort between Jefferson County Invasive Species Management, CWMA, and Archuleta County.