Leafy spurge is a member of the Euphorbiaceae or spurge family. Leafy spurge is a perennial that grows up to 3 feet tall. Stems of the plant are hairless, pale green or blue-green and usually thickly clustered. Leaves are narrow, hairless, and are alternate on the stem. Both leaves and stems exude a milky latex substance when the plant is damaged. Leafy spurge flowers are yellowish-green, small, arranged in numerous small clusters and surrounded by a pair of yellow-green, heart-shaped bracts that are often mistaken for flowers. Roots of the plant are brown and contain several pink buds that can produce new shoots. Seeds of leafy spurge are round-oval, smooth, and vary in color from grayish to purple.
Leafy spurge is considered a noxious weed under North Dakota state law, thus landowners are required to eradicate or control the spread of the plant.