The responsibility for roadside weeds and pest animals has not been completely resolved and in the interim, State Government has provided some limited funding. Landowners are required to undertake control works on their own properties.
What is a Weed?
Weeds are plants that are unwanted in a given situation and may be harmful, dangerous or economically detrimental. Weeds are plants that grow where they are not wanted.
Weeds in Victoria can be an exotic plant introduced from overseas, a species from outside Victoria or a Victorian species that has spread outside it original distribution. Weeds may cause a loss in biodiversity in a natural area and decrease productivity on agricultural land.
Types of Weeds
Weeds of National Significance (WONS)
These are a serious threat to agriculture, the environment or community health and cannot be sold or traded.
Weeds of National Significance are those that have been identified as already causing significant environmental damage under the National Weeds Strategy 2012.
Declared Weeds of the Mallee, North Central and Wimmera 2013, these plants should not be planted anywhere within the shire as they very invasive and spread easily within the environment.
Legislative Status: Plants in the column marked as Declared, are species that have been declared as noxious weeds under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994 or Fisheries Act 1995. It is illegal to buy, sell, possess for sale, display, plant or propagate, bring into or transport around Victoria any of these species without a permit. For a list of all Victorian declared weeds visit the Department of Primary Industries website.
Declared Noxious Weeds
In Victoria these are plants that have been proclaimed under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994 (currently under review; see above). Landholders are required to control or eradicate these weeds. (See also the North Central and Mallee Catchment Management Authority Weed Action Plan). Noxious weeds can be categorized as follows:
These weeds either do not occur in Victoria, but pose a significant threat if they invade, or are present, pose a serious threat and can be reasonably expected to be eradicated. The Victorian Government is responsible for control of these weeds.
Plants that pose an unacceptable risk of spread if they are sold or traded.
Regionally Prohibited Weeds
In general, these weeds are not widely distributed in a region, but are capable of spreading further and must be managed to eradicate them from a region. Landowners, managers and public land authorities are responsible for control on private land, but not on roadsides adjoining their property.
Regionally Controlled Weeds
Regionally Controlled Weeds are usually widespread and considered important in a region. To prevent their spread, continuing control measures are required. Landowners and managers are required to take all reasonable steps to control and prevent the spread of these weeds on their land.
Methods of Control
- Do not dump garden waste in bush land or on roadsides.
- Do not plant potential environmental weeds in your garden.
- Do not import contaminated soil.
- Make sure machinery is cleaned of any contaminates.
- Do not leave bare soil as weeds are opportunist and will invade the area.
- Make sure the whole plant has been removed including roots.
- This method is easier after rain as it causes less disturbance to soils.
- A knife is useful for smaller species, a spade for the larger deep rooted plants.
Mower with catcher
- Mow prior to seed drop to remove weed. This method reduced seed banks in the soil.
Cut and paint
- Cut the stem or trunk of the weed plant as close to the ground. Immediately dab or paint an appropriate herbicide on the freshly cut surface.
- Useful for small shrubs or trees.
- Woody vines can be treated by scraping the bark off the vine and dabbing with appropriate herbicide.
Drill and fill
- Drill holes into the trunk (close to the ground as possible) just below the bark right around the plant and immediately fill with appropriate herbicide.
- Spray weed species with appropriate herbicide. Make sure non target species are not damaged.
- Do not spray when plants are stressed;
- Too hot, dry or cold.
- Bulbs species should be sprayed at the “Bulb Exhaustion” stage, which is in mid winter for most species.
Disposal of garden rubbish
You can dispose of weed plant material by composting, burning or placing in the waste bin to go to landfill.
Compost non- reproductive plant parts. Seeds, bulbs, rhizomes are not suitable for composting as they will not effectively be killed. If burning is permitted these weeds can be burned otherwise they should be disposed of at the local landfill site to be buried.
Do Not Dump Your Rubbish On Roadsides or in the Bush.
Using Chemical Control
Chemical control should be the last resort if manual control is not possible. Use extreme caution when using chemicals near drainage lines, lakes, and rivers as minute amounts of chemical can have devastating effects on aquatic life and fauna.
- Some chemical require an Agricultural Chemical Users Permit.
- Always seek professional advice before buying herbicide, follow direction on usage and handling and read the label and Material Safety Data Sheet.
- Always wear protective clothing.
- Do not spray on windy days, if it is going to rain or in extreme temperature.
- If you have any concerns ring the Department of Primary Industries (131 186).
Useful environmental pest control resources
New and Emerging Weeds - 1800 084 881
DPI Chemical Information line 9210 9379