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Environmental weeds

Our new environmental weeds booklet aims to help residents identify weeds and provide information about appropriate weed control methods.

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Environmental weeds and invasive plants

What is an environmental weed?

Environmental weeds are introduced plants that have naturalised and invaded our bushland, beaches and waterways, threatening our natural environment.

Many environmental weeds were originally introduced and grown as ornamental garden plants. Most environmental weeds are not native to Australia, but some native plants have also become environmental weeds after spreading outside their natural range.

Weeds are usually very hardy plants. They may grow very quickly, reproduce in large amounts and are often tolerant to a wide range of conditions. It is these qualities that make weeds so successful and also make them difficult to control. Weeds commonly thrive where there has been a disturbance to the natural system such as changes in light, nutrients, soil or hydrology. The spread of weeds can be due to animals, wind, water and human activities.

Assistance with weed identification and control

Environmental Weeds booklet

City of Gold Coast has produced an Environmental Weeds booklet which aims to help residents identify weeds and provides information on how to control environmental weeds.

For a copy of the booklet contact us on 1300 GOLD COAST or 07 5582 8211, or download the Environmental Weeds of the Gold Coast booklet online.

The City's Conservation Partnerships Program provides advice and assistance to eligible landholders on weed identification and control.

Methods of controlling environmental weeds are explained in our videos on the Ecological restoration techniques page.

More resources

You can also send a sample for identification to the Queensland Herbarium.

Controlling environmental weeds

The appropriate weed control method or combination of methods will depend on a range of factors including:

  • the aim of your project
  • surrounding plants, landscape and land use
  • size and growth habit of plants to be controlled
  • scale and density of the weed infestation
  • other weed species impacting the site
  • seasonal and weather conditions
  • habitat considerations and surrounding native vegetation
  • safety considerations
  • available resources including follow up and maintenance
  • level of skill and experience of the people carrying out works.

It is important to note that weeds are usually the first plants to re-establish in an area after initial weed control is carried out. Successful long term weed control requires planning, working methodically, and ensuring follow up control and maintenance is ongoing.

Controlling weeds and private property advice

The City offers a number of free schemes to support private landholders wanting to manage their environmental weeds and restore their property's native habitat. Find out if you're eligible for assistance through one of the City's landholder partnerships.

You can learn more about controlling weeds and bush regeneration by participating in the City's NaturallyGC Program or join a bushcare group through our Beaches to Bushland Program.

Ecological restoration is the process of assisting the recovery of an ecosystem that has been degraded, damaged or destroyed. As our population and urban areas expand, the pressure on our natural areas grows, increasing the threat and effects of weed infestation.

Our Natural Areas Management Unit is actively involved in the restoration, rehabilitation and maintenance of natural areas. Find out more at our Bushland restoration page.

For further information contact us.

What is an invasive plant?

As described by the Australian Government's Department of the Environment and Energy, invasive species are those "occurring, as a result of human activities, beyond its accepted normal distribution and which threatens valued environmental, agricultural or other social resources by the damage it causes".

Restricted and prohibited invasive plants seriously threaten the natural environment, Queensland's primary industries, livestock and human health.

Everyone has a general biosecurity obligation (GBO) to minimise risks associated with invasive plants under their control. Download fact sheets on how to control Alligator Weed, Salvinia, Cats Claw Creeper and Cabomba.

Find out how to report sightings of the pest species monitored by the City and listed below.

Myrtle rust fungal disease can be reported to Biosecurity Queensland. Find out more about Myrtle rust.

Coastal Morning Glory

Related information

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