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Beat the rush on weed control

News release
09 April 2020

Often mistaken for a native, spiny rush (Juncus acutus) is a highly invasive agricultural and environmental pest plant.

Natural Resources Management Officer Saxon Ellis said accurate identification of this weed is essential.

“Spiny rush is often confused with the native Sea rush (Juncus kraussii),” Saxon said.

“The two species sometimes grow together as well, so it’s important we identify spiny rush correctly before taking control measures.”

Compared to its native lookalike, Spiny rush tends to be more spherical in profile with much stiffer stems.

The sharp spines of the declared weed can cause injury to stock, pets and people, and when established can become impenetrable, causing access issues and reducing pasture production.

A cooperative approach to control is usually the most successful,” said Saxon.

In recent programs, landholders have worked collaboratively with National Parks and Wildlife Service SA and with forestry to treat large infestations in different areas,” Saxon said.

“This really emphasises how important a coordinated landscape approach to Spiny rush control, and any pest control program, is.”

Spiny rush is a declared weed under the Natural Resources Management Act 2004 and as such requires control on roadside and properties.

For advice on pest plant identification and control, contact your local NRM Officer by calling the Natural Resources Centre in Mount Gambier 87351177 or in Keith 87551620. Contact information for NRM Officers across the region is also available at the link below.

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Media and Communications Coordinator