Halogeton (Halogeton glomeratus) is a native of Asia that has rapidly spread to millions of acres in the western states. A member of the goosefoot family (Chenopodiaceae) Halogeton is well adapted to alkaline soils and the semi-arid environment of the high desert where it quickly invades disturbed or overgrazed lands.
Halogeton produces toxic oxalates that can be fatally toxic to livestock, especially sheep, which is a concern since sheep grazing still occurs seasonally in parts of the Antelope Valley.
The known infestation of Halogeton has been reduced to a remnant population along the 14 Freeway in Palmdale. However, the current drought could be masking incipient infestations.
Feature photo: Matt Lavin (Wikimedia Commons)