Inkweed (Phytolacca octandra)
Inkweed is originally from South America.
A soft-wooded, bushy and leafy perennial that grows up to 2 metres tall or more. The flowers are green and are followed by dense cylindrical clusters of dark purple berries. The leaves are light green when new and grow to 10-15cm long by 5cm wide.
The berries and leaves are rarely grazed by stock and may be poisonous.
Inkweed grows in disturbed ground, bush burns and waste areas. In sheltered frost free locations, inkweed may survive for a number of years and reach a diameter of 2-3 metres or more. In heavily frosted areas, inkweed grows as an annual or may become dormant in winter before regrowing from the base in warmer weather. It is common in the Auckland, Taranaki and Wanganui regions in the North Island and Golden Bay, Kaikoura coast and Banks Peninsula in the South Island.
Grass Friendly Control of Inkweed
Best results are achieved when the plants are actively growing, this is usually from October to April.
Spot Spraying in pasture
Tordon* Gold at 500ml/100Ltr at any stage of growth will provide grass friendly control. Ensure complete coverage is achieved.
Broadcast spraying in pasture
Pasture-Kleen* herbicide at 4L/ha for seedlings no bigger than 4 leaves. It is essential to get them when they are still very small.