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Khaki weed makes unwelcome return to the region

News release
26 March 2020

A new infestation of Khaki weed has been identified just south of Keith, prompting Natural Resources Management Officers to remind locals to be on the lookout for this invasive species.

The infestation has been treated and landowners in the vicinity have been notified.

Natural Resources South East NRM Officer Tony Richman identified the large roadside strip, and said the area will continue to be monitored.

“Inspections of treated sites are necessary for at least three years to prevent reinfestation,” Tony said.

“The recent find is concerning, because it indicates that Khaki weed is finding its way into the region.”

Native to South America, Khaki weed (Alternanthera pungens) is a summer growing perennial with broad leaves and straw coloured burrs around 1cm long.

When established, it forms a dense carpet and its sharp burrs can be harmful to wildlife, stock and people.

“Khaki weed burrs also contain a considerable amount of seed, which is easily transported,” Tony said.

“The best strategy for landholders is to recognise and control infestations before they set seed and become established.”

Small infestations can be easily dug out by hand, and care must be taken to ensure the taproot is completely removed from the soil. All plant material must then be placed in thick plastic bags ready for deep burial, or to transport for burning.

“As Khaki weed is a declared weed under the NRM Act, landholders are required by law to destroy infestations and to notify us if it is on their property.”

“NRM Officers are available to assist with identification and advice on the best control methods.”

Contact information for NRM Officers from across the region can be found via the link below or by calling the Natural Resources Centre in Mount Gambier 87351177 or in Keith 87551620.

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Media and Communications Coordinator