Territory Stories

Weed all about it



Weed all about it


Northern Territory. Department of Natural Resources, Environment, the Arts and Sport


Weed all about it; E-Journals; PublicationNT; Weed all about it






Date:2008-03; This publication contains may contain links to external sites. These external sites may no longer be active.; Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).




Weeds; Weed Control; Northern Territory; Periodicals

Publisher name

Northern Territory Government

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Weed all about it


issue 5

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

Copyright owner

Northern Territory Government



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4 WWeed all about iteed all about it Bellyache bush before mulching In 2007 the Victoria River District Conservation Association (VRDCA) received a three year National Landcare Program Natural Resource Innovation Grant. The VRDCA has been using the grant to trial innovative weed control techniques on pastoral land, which incorporate mechanical mulching. Some of the early results indicate that mulching may provide a cost effective way to control infestations which were previously considered unmanageable. A series of on-station demonstrations have been planned and delivered to encourage wider landholder uptake. Four sites were identifi ed in the Victoria River District which had large and dense weed infestations. Each site was dominated by a different weed species, these were: Bellyache bush (Jatropha gossypifolia); Observations to date Early observations have demonstrated different levels of success between weed species. The adult bellyache bush plants that were mulched died completely, with no suckering or regrowth evident at the site. After the fi rst rains, thousands of seedlings emerged, however the mulched areas required less chemical and less time to treat than equivalent size areas on the station that had not been mulched. A defi nite success! In the case of Acacia farnesiana, approximately 75% of plants suckered after mulching, however the growth of the suckers has been slow. Mulching has enabled the acacia to be treated using foliar spraying rather than basal barking techniques. Parkinsonia responded in a similar way, although that the rate of suckering was much lower. Rubber bush did not respond well to mulching. The mulching appeared to encourage growth, in particular the production of multiple stems. Chemical treatment of the site required considerably more time and chemical than it would have if it had not been mulched. Contact Victoria River District Conservation Association Facilitator Adam Northy Ph: 89710368 - E-mail: vrdca@bigpond.com Mechanical controls for dense weed infestations Bellyache bush after mulching Parkinsonia (Parkinsonia aculeata); Rubber Bush (Calotropis procera); and Acacia farnesiana. Between July and October 2007, a tractor-mounted mulcher was used to knock down adult weeds on the chosen sites. The next step was to chemically treat any suckers and seedlings that emerged early in the wet season. Native grass was then sown to facilitate rehabilitation. The sites will now be left until early next wet season, when they will be burnt to remove any surviving weed seedlings. It is hoped that by the end of the third year the weeds will be in such low numbers that continuing wet season burns will completely remove the weed from the sites.

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