Stachys arvensis plant NC2
Introduced, cool-season, annual, erect herb to 35 cm tall. Stems are hairy. Leaves are stalked, opposite, 1-4 cm long, broad and deeply veined, with rounded teeth on the leaf margins. Flowers are 5-7 mm long, pink to purple and occur in small clusters in the axils of the upper leaves. Flowering is in winter and early spring. A native of Europe and North Africa, it is a weed of cultivation and disturbed land, such as around watering points, stockyards and stream banks. Poisonous to cattle, horses, pigs and sheep. Most cases occur in late winter and spring, causing a range of symptoms including weakness, staggers with stilted gait, dullness and diarrhoea. Older plants are generally more toxic than younger ones. Do not graze stock where infestations occur. Remove stock and rest them for several days to 2 weeks if they have grazed plants. Healthy vigorous pastures are an effective control. Registered herbicides are available for control in pastures.