Pest plants

Pest plants must be managed because they can have significant impacts on industries and the environment.

Declared pest plants

Pest plants that are a significant threat to agriculture, the natural environment and public health and safety are called declared plants and land owners have a legal responsibility to manage these plants. The Natural Resources Management (NRM) Act 2004 sets out the legal framework for:

  • banning the sale of declared weeds
  • controlling the movement of declared weeds
  • destroying or controlling infestations of declared weeds
  • notifying authorities when an infestation is detected.  

All declared (and undeclared) plant policies are available on the Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA) website, along with the complete list of declared plants.

The PIRSA website also lists alternative common and scientific names for all plants prohibited from sale in South Australia, and a free Weed Control app, which provides information about the control of weeds declared in South Australia.

Alert weeds, established and emerging weeds in this region are profiled below.

What is being done to manage pests?

Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Ranges (AMLR) has a clearly defined approach to managing pests. The pest management hierarchy recommends management actions for target pest plants and animals. This helps improve detection and response to new and existing pests based on their invasiveness, impact, potential distribution and feasibility of containing it. There is also a dedicated Animal and Plant Control Coordinator to provide leadership for pest management issues in the region.

How we can help you

Natural Resources Adelaide and Mt Lofty Range staff are available to help you plan your approach to pest plant control. Staff can provide you with technical support, information resources and in some cases incentives to help you control pest plants. New species can be identified as we have access to a weed taxonomist at the state herbarium. Contact us to find out more.

Staff also ensure that declared plants are controlled as per the AMLR NRM Board’s responsibilities under the NRM Act. The approach taken to this control is detailed in the AMLR NRM Plan.

Using chemicals for weed control

We can provide advice on the use of chemicals to control pest plants. It is important that chemicals such as herbicides and pesticides are used correctly. Incorrect use can impact human health and the health of the environment. Many people apply up to five times more chemical than is needed to kill the plants being targeted. This is a huge waste of time and money and can be counterproductive as it can kill the foliage of the plant before reaching the roots and so allow the weed to regrow. Excess chemicals can also run off, impacting soils, native plants and animals, and stormwater and waterways.

The following resources can help you to use chemicals safely and responsibly:
Calendar for weed control
Weed management techniques
Chemical effectiveness
Alternatives to chemicals
Bait station safety
Best time to spray
Personal safety
Understanding product labels #1
Understanding product labels #2
Using glyphosate
Weeds near water

Weed profiles

African Boxthorn

Common name: African Boxthorn
Scientific name: Lycium ferocissimum
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
Related links:


African Feathergrass

Common name: African Feathergrass
Scientific name: Pennisetum macrourum
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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African Lovegrass

Common name: African Lovegrass
Scientific name: Eragrostis curvula
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Aleppo Pine

Common name: Aleppo Pine
Scientific name: Pinus halepensis
Status: Declared: must be controlled (unless planted and maintained for amenity or commercial purposes), banned from sale.
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Alligator Weed

Common name: Alligator Weed
Scientific name: Alternanthera philoxeroides
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Arum Lily

Common name: Arum Lily
Scientific name: Zantedeschia aethiopica
Status: Declared: must be controlled (doesn't apply to ones planted >100m from wetland/watercourse). Plant mustn't be sold.
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Bathurst Burr

Common name: Bathurst Burr
Scientific name: Xanthium spinosum
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Blackberry

Common name: Blackberry
Scientific name: Rubus fruticosus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Bluebell Creeper

Common name: Bluebell Creeper
Scientific name: Billardiera heterophylla
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Boneseed

Common name: Boneseed
Scientific name: Chrysanthemoides monilifera
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Bridal Creeper

Common name: Bridal Creeper
Scientific name: Asparagus asparagoides
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Bridal Veil

Common name: Bridal Veil
Scientific name: Asparagus declinatus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Broomrape

Common name: Broomrape
Scientific name: Orobanche spp
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Buffel Grass

Common name: Buffel Grass
Scientific name: Cenchrus ciliaris
Status: Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Bulbil Watsonia

Common name: Bulbil Watsonia
Scientific name: Watsonia meriana var. bulbillifera
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Calomba Daisy

Common name: Calomba Daisy
Scientific name: Oncosiphon suffruticosum
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Caltrop

Common name: Caltrop
Scientific name: Tribulus terrestris
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Cape Broom

Common name: Cape Broom
Scientific name: Genista monspessulana
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Cape Tulip

Common name: Cape Tulip
Scientific name: Moraea flaccid and Moraea miniata
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Chilean Needlegrass

Common name: Chilean Needlegrass
Scientific name: Nassella neesiana
Status: Declared: notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found, must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Coolatai Grass

Common name: Coolatai Grass
Scientific name: Hyparrhenia hirta
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Dune Onion Weed

Common name: Dune Onion Weed
Scientific name: Trachyandra divaricata
Status: Priority emerging weed.
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English Broom

Common name: English Broom
Scientific name: Cytisus scoparius
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Gorse

Common name: Gorse
Scientific name: Ulex europaeus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Hawthorn

Common name: Hawthorn
Scientific name: Azzarola Crataegus sinaica and May Crataegus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Horsetail

Common name: Horsetail
Scientific name: Equisetum spp.
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Hudson Pear (White-spined)

Common name: Hudson Pear (White-spined)
Scientific name: Cylindropuntia pallida (syn. C. rosea)
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Innocent Weed

Common name: Innocent Weed
Scientific name: Cenchrus incertus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Khaki Weed

Common name: Khaki Weed
Scientific name: Alternanthera pungens
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale. Notify: must notify Natural Resources AMLR if found.
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Mexican Feathergrass

Common name: Mexican Feathergrass
Scientific name: Nassella tenuissima
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Muraltia Heisteria

Common name: Muraltia Heisteria
Scientific name: Furze muraltia
Status: Priority emerging weed.
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Olive (Feral or Wild)

Common name: Olive (Feral or Wild)
Scientific name: Olea europaea
Status: Declared: must be controlled (unless planted and maintained for use).
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Pink Pampas Grass

Common name: Pink Pampas Grass
Scientific name: Cortaderia jubata
Status: Declared: notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found, must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Prickly Pear

Common name: Prickly Pear
Scientific name: Opuntia spp.
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Sagittaria

Common name: Sagittaria
Scientific name: Sagittaria platyphylla
Status: Regional Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Salvation Jane

Common name: Salvation Jane
Scientific name: Echium plantagineum
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Salvinia

Common name: Salvinia
Scientific name: Salvinia molesta
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Serrated Tussock

Common name: Serrated Tussock
Scientific name: Nassella trichotoma
Status: Declared: notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found, must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Silverleaf Nightshade

Common name: Silverleaf Nightshade
Scientific name: Solanum elaeagnifolium
Status: Declared: must be controlled.
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Spanish Heath

Common name: Spanish Heath
Scientific name: Erica lusitanica
Status: Priority emerging weed.
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Spiny Rush

Common name: Spiny Rush
Scientific name: Juncus acutus
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Texas Needlegrass

Common name: Texas Needlegrass
Scientific name: Nassella leucotricha
Status: Declared: notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found, must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Water Hyacinth

Common name: Water Hyacinth
Scientific name: Eichhornia crassipes
Status: State Alert. Notify Natural Resources AMLR immediately if found. Declared: must be destroyed, banned from sale.
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Western Cape Bridal Creeper

Common name: Western Cape Bridal Creeper
Scientific name: Asparagus asparagoides Western Cape form
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Wild artichoke

Common name: Wild artichoke
Scientific name: Cynara cardunculus
Status: Declared: must be controlled.
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Wild Rose and Dog Rose and Sweet Briar Rose

Common name: Wild Rose and Dog Rose and Sweet Briar Rose
Scientific name: Rosa canina and R. rubiginosa
Status: Declared: must be controlled, banned from sale.
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Related links

Natural Resources Adelaide and Mount Lofty Ranges