Weeds in Australia

About weeds

About weeds

Invasive weeds are among the most serious threats to Australia's natural environment and primary production industries. Weeds have major economic, environmental and social impacts in Australia, causing damage to natural landscapes, agricultural lands, waterways and coastal areas.

Australia spends considerable time and money each year in combating weed problems and protecting ecosystems and primary production on private and public land. Weed problems are complex, with multiple causes, and efforts to reduce their impacts must be coordinated across all sections of society.

A weed is any plant that requires some form of action to reduce its effect on the economy, the environment, human health and amenity. Weeds typically produce large numbers of seeds, assisting their spread and are often excellent at surviving and reproducing in disturbed environments. A weed can be an exotic species or a native species that colonises and persists in an ecosystem in which it did not previously exist. Weeds can inhabit all environments; from our towns and cities through to our oceans, deserts and alpine areas.

Some weeds are of particular concern and, as a result, have been listed for priority management or in legislation.