Kevin Bradley, MU Extension weed scientist and associate professor of plant sciences in the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, unveiled the app for iPhones, iPads and Android devices at the MU Crop Management Conference in December.
Called ID Weeds, the app has information on more than 400 plant species growing in crop fields, pastures, lawns, gardens or aquatic areas in Missouri and surrounding states.
ID Weeds helps users narrow the list of suspects with a series of drop-down boxes for various plant characteristics. Users don’t need to know technical terms such as “ligules” or “spatulate.” For each characteristic, users can click on “what’s this?” to bring up an illustration.
Clicking on “Identify” produces a list of weeds that match the characteristics chosen. The more characteristics specified, the shorter the list is. Selecting a weed on the list brings up detailed information and one or more photographs.
Users can also look up a weed by searching for its common or scientific name, or select from an alphabetical list, from “Alligatorweed” to “Yucca.”
“Proper identification of weeds is important so that you choose an appropriate and cost-effective method of control,” Bradley said.
The app was developed by James Meng, a programmer for MU Extension Technology and Computer Services (ETCS).
ID Weeds is compatible with iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad running iOS 5.1 or later, and devices running Android 2.2.