Victorian Volcanic Plains Conservation Management Network

Raising awareness about the value and use of native grasslands, seasonal wetlands, grassy woodlands & other ecosystems on the Victorian Volcanic Plains

WEED WARNING African Weed-orchid

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African Weed-orchid (Disa bracteata) flower

African Weed-orchid (Disa bracteata) flower

While you are out looking at grasslands keep an eye out for the invasive African Weed-orchid (Disa bracteata).  The plant grows readily in competition with a wide range of other flora including native orchids and grasses, it invades bushland,grassland and pastures and is attracted to disturbed sites. The African Weed-orchid will grow in all light conditions and is not fussy about soil types. Prevention is the best and most effective method of weed control.

If you find an infestation, all measures need to be ensured that the spread is minimised. Manual removal has proven the most effective method of control and try and remove the weed is removed before flowering is too advanced in October/November. Plants are still flowering at the moment.  A lot of care is needed if removing a plant as the flower head matures. The seed is very fine and easily dispersed.

Gently bend the stem into a plastic bag, ensuring all seeds only fall into the bag. Using a screwdriver or similar tool lever up the tubers. Dispose of responsibly in local garbage collection. It is important to remove the tubers as well as the seed head and they are not down very far below the soil.

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