|Botanical Name||Phytolacca octandra|
|Origin||Tropical South and Central America|
DescriptionSubshrub to 2 m tall. Stem soft woody near base and often reddish. Poisonous. Flower stalk erect to 70 mm long at maximum flowering and 110mm at fruiting. Leaf blade elliptic (both ends rounded, widest in middle) 40-200 x 15-50 mm. Flower Nov-Aug. Fruit a dense head of inky black round berries with red juice.
Where is it found?Open areas, cut-over shrub and forest, wasteland, riverbeds and old pastures. Widespread and common. A common garden weed, pasture weed and also on offshore islands.
Why is it a problem?Can form dense stands in open areas, cut-over shrub and forest. Not a problem in most places.
How does it spread?Spread by birds.
How do I get rid of it?
Cut tap root with spade at least 50mm below the soil surface.
Spray with selected herbicide.
(i) Metsulfuron + Penetrant.
Rate - Handgun 25 g Metsulfuron + 100 mls Penetrant/100 litres water. Knapsack 5 g Metsulfuron + 10 mls Penetrant/10 litres water. Mist blower 10 g Metsulfuron + 10 mls Penetrant/10 litres water.
(ii) Glyphosate + Penetrant.
Rate - Handgun 1 litre Glyphosate + 200 mls Penetrant/100 litres water. Knapsack 100 mls Glyphosate + 20 mls Pentrant/10 litres water.
(iii) Tordon 2G (Herbicide with long residual life in soil.)
(iv) Tordon Gold - 500ml / 100 litres water