Summer is time to check for orange hawkweed

Agriculture Victoria is encouraging landowners in western Victoria to keep their eyes peeled for orange hawkweed and to report any suspect plants.

Agriculture Victoria Leading Biosecurity Officer Fiona Sharman said orange hawkweed continues to be monitored and treated by Agriculture Victoria at sites at Blackwood, Daylesford, Mount Macedon and Trentham.

“We’ve seen orange hawkweed continue to germinate over recent seasons which can damage our native environment.

“The sooner we can take action against infestations, the better our chances are to eradicate it.

“Now is the best time of year to inspect your property for orange hawkweed, as the weed flowers in summer and is easier to spot.”

Orange hawkweed can be identified by its bright orange, daisy-like flowers with square-ended petals. The flowers are up to 15mm across and arranged in clusters on the stem. The stems and leaves have long wiry hairs.

Orange hawkweed is a State Prohibited Weed, which is the highest category of declared noxious weed in Victoria.

Native to Europe, these weeds have the potential to cause significant impact to native ecosystems through restricting the growth of neighbouring plants by releasing chemicals into the soil, replacing native plants with a dense mat of rosettes.

Hawkweeds can spread quickly by seeds that are carried in the wind or from stolons (above-ground runners) and root fragments.

If an infestation is found, Agriculture Victoria will treat, remove and/or dispose of orange hawkweed at no cost to the landowner. If you find orange hawkweed, please do not attempt to treat and dispose of the weed yourself.

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