WSWS History

The Western Society of Weed Science (WSWS) was originally established as the Western Weed Control Conference (WWCC) and had its first annual meeting in Denver in 1938.

The Conference had first been suggested by Harry L. Spence, Extension Agronomist from Idaho, at the regular meeting of the Western Plant Quarantine Board, which had been meeting regularly since 1919. He recognized the need to coordinate efforts in weed management among the various states and agencies and “to interchange suggestions in regards to our many weed problems.”

The WWCC continued annually, except for 1943, until 1950. In 1950 the decision was made to meet every two years on even-numbered years. The Research Section met on the odd-numbered years. In 1963 the meeting was changed to odd-numbered years to alternate with the Weed Science Society of America which met on even-numbered years.

In 1967 the Conference was changed back to an annual affair and in 1968 the Society name was changed to the Western Society of Weed Science.

Herbicide Company "Genealogy"

Compiled by Dr. Arnold Appleby


Members of the Western Society of Weed Science are weed science professionals working throughout the Western United States, including the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming, and the Canadian provinces Alberta, British Columbia, and Saskatchewan. Membership is open to anyone, including federal, state, and local employees, private company personnel, crop consultants, growers, or others interested in a wide variety of weed science related information.


Activities of the Society are guided by a Constitution and Bylaws, governed by Officers and an Executive Committee, and implemented by Standing and Ad Hoc Committees.

Annual Meeting

The Western Society of Weed Science holds its annual meeting every year in the first part of March. Attendance is welcome to anyone interested in various weed science issues. In the past, participants consisted of producers and university, industry, state and federal personnel. We encourage participants from any discipline to attend the meeting and become involved in the society.

The meeting program consists primarily of poster and oral paper presentations. Some years symposiums or other special sessions are organized on topics like herbicide resistance or invasive weeds.

Students are highly encouraged to present their research at the annual meeting. This participation helps become acquainted with how a professional society works and gives future full members valuable experience presenting scientific data.

An awards luncheon and social period provide participants the opportunity to visit with scientists from other areas of the western United States and beyond. Updates from industry personnel provide current information on new technology to help battle weeds.

Beautiful site locations attract hundreds of people to the meeting each year. Bring your spouse along to participate in an excellent meeting and enjoy the other tourist sites available.