Woody Weeds Campaign

The worst weedy trees in the region are in the firing line as part of our Woody Weeds Campaign.

Everyone from suburban gardeners to bush block owners is urged to get on board and help stop the spread of the invaders, which cause huge problems when they jump from gardens to surrounding bushland, reserves and catchment areas.

    Why woody weeds are a problem

    Weedy trees such as Sydney Golden Wattle, Flinders Range Wattle, Sweet Pittosporum, Victorian Teatree, Blackwood and Olives also pose big problems by outcompeting native plants and dominating bushland.

    Weedy shrubs and trees are one of our biggest threats to native bush because they can spread vigorously, outcompete local trees, and the seed can last for decades in the soil.

      How the campaign works

      Our campaign is aimed at raising awareness in the community about problematic weedy trees. We run free workshops for identifying and removing woody weeds (stay tuned to our Events page, social media and newsletters) plus share information, tips, photos and videos online and on our social media channels. We want everyone in the community to be able to I.D our worst woody weeds. This campaign is funded by the WA Government’s State Natural Resource Management Program.

        Identifying the invaders

        To help with idenfication, we’ve made a series of short videos on some of our region’s problem weed trees. Each video is several minutes long and covers the essentials of identifying the species, how to control it, what natives not to mistake it for, and any other species-specific info you need to know.

        Sydney Golden Wattle:

        Native to New South Wales, this species grows to 10m, with elongated leaves that are 5cm-25cm in length and yellow, cylindrical flowers from June to November. It reproduces from seeds dispersed by water, birds, ants, soil movement and dumping of garden waste.

        Sweet Pittosporum:

        Native to eastern Australia, this species is planted widely in backyards and gardens across the region and now threatens our iconic karri forests. It has smooth grey bark and glossy green leaves similar to bay leaves, often with wavy margins, and sweet-smelling white flowers. Flowers are followed by orange grape-sized fruit containing sticky seeds that are eaten and dispersed by birds.

        Victorian Teatree:

        Also known as Coastal Teatree, this species is from south-eastern Australia and was introduced as a garden plant, for screening and wind breaks. It’s a tall shrub or small tree growing to 6m with sprays of white flowers from July to October, a solid trunk with strips of bark, and small rounded leaves in a distinctive grey-green colour, growing in sandy and gravel soils and thriving in coastal areas and roadsides.

        Blackwood (Acacia melanoxylon):

        A large, slender tree that can grow to more than 20m, with smooth grey bark and deep green foliage. Its cream-coloured flowers in spring make it easy to distinguish from most other tree wattles which typically have deep gold or yellow flowers. Their clusters of curly, twisted seed pods also make it distinctive from other wattles.

        Flinders Range Wattle:

        Originating from South Australia, this showy garden shrub grows to 5m, flowers from June and can be identified by itsblue-green leaves and sprays of bright yellow globular flowers. VIDEO COMING SOON



        A popular garden specimen grown for its fruit and draught tolerance, olive trees can become weedy if they are not netted and birds are able to eat the fruit and spread the seed. Olive trees form large, dense monocultures, transforming ecosystems and outcompeting natives. Growing up to 10m, the common olive has leaves with silvery-grey undersides and pointed tips. VIDEO COMING SOON


        Dealing with woody weeds

        Once you’ve identified the invaders, you can either hand-pull seedlings, remove larger shrubs and trees with a pruning saw or chainsaw, and for bigger jobs call in contractors or the Nature Conservation’s Bush Regeneration Team.

        We really encourage you to remove them because one tree can spread over a large area in just a few years. Once the woody weeds are gone, it’s important to replace them with local natives to restore habitat, complement our bushland and be beneficial for wildlife. Please note, if wildlife are using your woody weeds for food or habitat, a staged removal will minimise the impacts on animals.

          Cost-sharing funding for woody weed control

          If your property has a woody weed problem and is close to large areas of bushland or a national park, you could be eligible for funding to bring in contractors to remove the shrubs or trees.

          To enquire about grant funding, email peta.lierich@natureconservation.org.au


          Community Resource Centre
          33 Tunbridge Street
          Margaret River WA 6285

          Postal Address

          PO Box 1749 
Margaret River WA. 6285

          Contact Us

          Phone: (08) 9757 2202
          Email: info@natureconservation.org.au