Gorse - A thorny perennial shrub that closely resembles Scotch Broom and can grow to be 10+ feet tall.
Leaves: Leaves are small, dark green and trifoliate — having 3 thin leaflets. As they mature, they become spiny. The leaf axils also have spines.
Flowers: Flowers bloom April - September. Bright yellow pea-like flowers form clusters near branch terminals.
Habitat: Can grow in most habitats, but is especially prevalent in coastal environments.
Weed Classification: B Designate
Why is it a Noxious Weed?
Aside from "noxious" growth habits, gorse also creates large physical barriers and poses significant wildfire risk due to the concentration of oils in the dried plant matter.
There are a small number of known infestations of Gorse in Lewis County, most of which are nearly eradicated and the remaining is on private property.
Washington State Noxious Weed Control Board
PNW Pest Management Handbook
UC Davis Weed Report