Weed and Grass Identification Contest

Co-Superintendent: Aaron Nygren
Co-Superintendent: Ron Seymour


  • Participant Eligibility:
    • Participant must be 10 years old or older on January 1 of the current year.
    • Contestants must be 4-H members at the time of the contest and eligibility verified by county extension staff.
    • Past high point individuals (i.e., Gold Medal Winners) may compete for individual and/or team honors.
  • Participants are required to pay a non-refundable fee of $5/person.
  • Participants will be notified of the time, date, and location of the contest prior to State Fair.
  • General rules from the 4-H section of the Nebraska State Fair apply.

Age Divisions

Age Divisions will be determined by their 4-H age, the age of the youth before January 1 of the current year.

  • F500016 Intermediate Division: Ages 10-13
  • F500015 Senior Division: Ages 14-18

Contest Guidelines

  • Participants may enter as an individual and as members of a team. A team consists of 3 to 4 individuals with the total scores of the three high individuals making the team score. Membership of the team must be designated if team competition is intended. This will need to be designated prior to initiation of the contest. While most teams consist of 4-H members from the same county, teams may consist of members of contiguous counties. 
  • A team will compete at the level of the oldest team member, e.g., if a member of a team is in the Senior division, the team will compete in the Senior division, even if some members of the team are in the Intermediate division. In this situation, the intermediate division youth would need to complete both the intermediate and senior sections of the contest.
  • Individuals compete according to their age for individual honors within their age division.
  • Contestants will be required to identify the plant specimens by accepted common name as defined by the “Weed and Grass ID List” by matching the contest specimen with a number from the alphabetical specimen listing for the contest.
    • One point is possible for each specimen.
    • Specimens will consist of a minimum of leaves and stem, but may also include flowers, seed, or roots structures.
    • The first 35 specimens (intermediate division) will be exclusive to the Intermediate division list. Specimens for senior’s division 4-H members will include these plants as well as 25-30 additional specimens from those species noted on the ID list for 2016.
  • Ties will be broken using a two-step process. 1) Five additional plants and 2) a multiple choice quiz about weeds and grasses. Step 2 will be used if ties still exist after Step 1 has been completed.
  • All Participants must wear the State Fair 4-H T-shirt provided to them during the contest and awards.


  • 4-H Weed and Grass ID List
  • All grass and weed plants on the list are described in either the Weeds of the Great Plains (published by Nebraska Department of Agriculture, (402) 471-2394, Cost: $25.00) or in Common Grasses of Nebraska, EC170, (published by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension, Cost: $5.00).



  • Gold, Silver and Bronze medals will be awarded to the top 3 individuals in each division of the State 4-H Weed & Grass Identification contest.
  • Placing ribbons will be awarded to the top 10 individuals in each division of the State 4-H Weed & Grass Identification contest.


  • Ribbons will be awarded to each team member of the top 5 teams in each age division.