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Invasive Weed Alert: Chinese Violet

Released on: 15 July 2019

Released on: 15 July 2019

Chinese Violet1

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council is urgently calling for residents to inspect their properties for a high priority weed called Chinese Violet.

Chinese Violet is a rapidly growing and hardy creeper that has the potential to invade many coastal and sub-coastal areas.

It has recently been found for the first time in our region on a riverbank in Beechwood, and can have drastic impacts on our local environment and agricultural industries as it grows rapidly and smothers other vegetation, reduces biodiversity and destroys the habitat of native wildlife.

To stop the spread and germination of this destructive plant, residents are being encouraged to inspect their property for the priority weed, and if found to contact Council for assistance.

“Chinese Violet is commonly found in coastal sandy soils, however locally it has been unusually found on a riverbank in a shady area, and we have taken immediate action to stop its spread,” said Group Manager Maria Doherty.

“The weed is under a NSW Control Order which means Council is focused on eradication, and we’re asking everyone to check their properties, particularly gardens, for any sign of the weed and if found to report it to Council immediately.”

What is Chinese Violet?

• a creeping plant with opposite leaves and lightly hairy stems, growing up to 1m tall

• leaves are paler beneath, oval to triangular in shape

• forms sprawling mats and can clamber over adjacent vegetation

• stems can root at the nodes in moist soil

• white bell-shaped flowers 2-2.5cm long with distinct purple blotches in two parallel lines

• fruit capsules 3cm long and guitar-shaped

Chinese Violet is spread by seed and plant fragments, and can flower and fruit year round. The seeds are dispersed explosively from the drying fruit capsules, and after most of the ripe capsules have released their seeds, the plant dies back to ground level.

Chinese Violet is regulated by a Control Order under the NSW Biosecurity Act 2015 and applies to all residents. The Control Order specifies that individuals must report occurrences of this weed within 24 hours of detection.

Residents are also advised not to remove the Chinese Violet on their own, as regular control methods may disperse the weed over a larger area.

For more information, to report an infestation of Chinese Violet, or to receive a free inspection and weed control assistance call Council's Weed Team on 6581 8111.

Fact Sheet and further information: https://www.pmhc.nsw.gov.au/Services/Environment/Weeds-and-Biosecurity/Invasive-weeds-alert-Chinese-Violet