What is an environmental weed?

Environmental weeds are plants, annuals, perennial herbs, shrubs, vines, trees, aquatics or succulents which, through various methods of distribution and proliferation have become weedy. They can be foreign plants accidentally or intentionally introduced into Australia, or they can be native plants that have become weedy due to inappropriate management, or because they are outside of their normal range. Environmental weeds may have significant economic and social impacts, as well as environmental impacts, including:

  • reduction in local ecosystem biodiversity
  • financial cost of control
  • loss of ecotourism opportunities
  • impacts on community recreation activities
  • impact on general landscape aesthetic value
  • degradation of water quality
  • increased fire risk hazard

Due to their ability to survive and spread over a wide range of conditions these plant species are identified and classed as environmental weeds.

Chinese Violet

Chinese Violet (Asystasia gangetica