Kochia is a highly branched annual herb up to 2 m tall. The stems are
yellowish green, green or streaked with red. The lower leaves are linear
to lanceolate and petiolate. The upper leaves are sessile, linear, elliptical
to oblanceolate. The stems and leaves are often densely hairy. The greenish
flowers are small and inconspicuous occurring in spike-like inflorescences.
The fruit, a utricle, is bladderlike 1-seeded and indehiscent. The smooth
to granular brown to black obovate seeds have concave faces.
Kochia is common in roadsides, pastures, fields, and waste areas. The
plants are readily grazed by livestock which contributes to their spread.
The plant has been reported to cause a photosensitization syndrome in