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PlantFiles: Common Kochia, Burning Bush, Ragweed, Mexican Fireweed
Bassia scoparia

Family: Amaranthaceae
Genus: Bassia (BASS-ee-uh) (Info)
Species: scoparia (sko-PAIR-ee-uh) (Info)

Synonym:Kochia scoparia
Synonym:Chenopodium scoparia

3 members have or want this plant for trade.


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)
36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction
Pollen may cause allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Late Summer/Early Fall

Grown for foliage
Good Fall Color

Other details:
May be a noxious weed or invasive
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:
Unknown - Tell us

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No positives
2 neutrals
2 negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral pyropixie On Jul 4, 2014, pyropixie from Birmingham
United Kingdom wrote:

Hi I have just brought some kochia scoparia and some websites say they can harm other plants I just wanted to know which plants are ok to plant with them

Negative coriaceous On Feb 21, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

A highly invasive plant, and a difficult weed to control. In North America, it has naturalized in 43 states and 7 provinces. It is banned or quarantined in three states.

It is also highly allergenic.

Negative nonconformist7 On Aug 17, 2011, nonconformist7 from Aurora, CO (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is an invasive noxious weed. It goes from alive and green to brown and dead and then blows around like a 'tumbleweed' similar to Russian thistle (Salsola kali) spreading its seeds EVERYWHERE.

Kochia is a bushy annual and is one of the fastest-spreading weeds in the U.S. It is very drought tolerant, and can survive and little rainfall. It produces a surprisingly large amount of seeds that are spread through the wind and through other avenues. Livestock eat the plant, although it contains high nitrate levels and can be toxic to in large amounts.

Aside from harsh chemical sprays, there are very little methods of controlling the spread of Koshia beyond preventing the seeds from forming, and uprooting the weeds when young. This plant can cause allergic reactions in people during the late summer or fall because of the airborne pollen.

The fuzzy caterpillars of Diacrisia virginica (Woolly Bear Moth/Isabella Moth) feed on the foliage.

Neutral frostweed On Jan 4, 2007, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Burning Bush, Summer Cypress, Mexican Fireweed, Belvedere Bassia scoparia is Native to Texas and other States.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Fredonia, Arizona
Aurora, Colorado
Lamar, Colorado
Springfield, Colorado
Jeffersonville, Indiana
Belfield, North Dakota

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