Alert List for Environmental Weeds
Department of the Environment and Heritage and the CRC for Australian Weed Management, 2003
ISBN 1 9209 3231 3
About the guide
Thunbergia laurifolia is on the Alert List for Environmental Weeds, a list of 28 non-native plants that threaten biodiversity and cause other environmental damage. Although only in the early stages of establishment, these weeds have the potential to seriously degrade Australia's ecosystems.
Thunbergia species were introduced to Australia as garden ornamentals but have escaped into native vegetation, and four species are now declared weeds in Queensland. T. laurifolia is very similar to the closely related blue trumpet vine Thunbergia grandiflora, which is a serious weed in northern Queensland. Both species were popular with gardeners for their large blue flowers and climbing habit.
Thunbergia species are a major threat to monsoon vine thickets and remnant tropical rainforests across northern Australia, including the World Heritage-listed Wet Tropics. They climb and smother native vegetation, shading out and killing the understorey and often pulling down mature trees with the weight of the vine.