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Central Ranges

Sustainable-production:  Controlling agricultural weeds

Medium Priority

What is this issue

Agricultural weeds.

Impacts of the issue

Reduced profitability due to costs of control and direct competition with pasture species. 


  • Insufficient control of weeds
  • Low priority for more landholders
  • Lack of landholder knowledge or management capacity
  • High landholder turn-over
  • Increase in lifestyle properties


  • Economy/markets
  • Turn-over of property ownership
  • Reducing size of land parcels and changes of land use
  • Variability of rainfall (year to year)
  • Lack of quality information about nutritional value (e.g. buffel grass)

Climate impacts and adaptation needs

  • Climate change is likely to drive a shift to lower input farming systems
  • Building landholder skills in pasture management will help manage weed risk

Who plays a role

  • Agricultural advisors
  • Australian Wool Innovation
  • Barossa Improved Grazing Group
  • Consultants
  • Co-operative Research Centre for Weeds Australia (Weeds CRC)
  • Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources
  • Farming systems groups
  • Grains Research and Development Corporation
  • Landholders
  • Meat & Livestock Australia
  • Mid North Grasslands Working Group
  • Natural Resources SA Murray-Darling Basin
  • Primary Industries and Regions SA - Biosecurity SA
  • Pro-Graze
  • Research institutions
  • SA Murray-Darling Basin Natural Resources Management Board

Strategies and Actions

Contain spread of weed populations

  • Regular monitoring of areas with known weed populations
  • Promote and support landholders to undertake early and regular containment works, to minimise further spread
  • Support landholders to coordinate with neighbouring properties for weed management
  • Support quarantine measures, i.e. Control movement and sale from infested properties, holding pens and plant hygiene
  • Promote good biosecurity hygiene practices to prevent further infestations

Protect sites of high value within the region

  • Map key assets/ sites of the region and their weed threats
  • Support control of infestations in close proximity to key assets/ sites, aiming for a significant reduction in density
  • Monitor change in distribution within and in close proximity of key assets/ sites
  • Prevent incursion of weeds by encouraging natural regeneration and/or planting native species
  • Prevent incursion of weeds by managing total grazing pressure

Manage weeds using a landscape approach

  • Research, trial and develop integrated weed management packages - using both biological and herbicide treatments where possible
  • Promote integrated weed management technique to land managers
  • Support the collaboration of neighbours on control campaigns as a landscape approach
  • Recognise and reward land manager efforts at best practise weed control