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Running the Farm : Weedbuster's wicked weed Series


One of the most destructive groups of weeds are vines and climbers that in many cases started life as ornamental garden plants.

Chinese privet was planted extensively throughout towns and rural areas as hedging. It has small, glossy, bright green leaves with smooth edges, and it produces tiny, smelly, creamy flowers from October to January.

Jerusalem cherry tends to turn up in shady places – under trees, grazed bush remnants, along river and stream banks, behind old sheds and along hedgerows.

This vine from Asia first established in the wild in New Zealand as early as 1926.

Originally from Brazil, the exotic sounding alligator weed is a dangerous invader sneaking into wetlands, rivers and even subdivisions around the North Island. 

This macho Mediterranean creeper is a hard one to get control of once it is established.

This large, luscious Tahitian interloper has leathery deep green arrow-shaped leaves and thick trunk-like stems, supported by a fleshy underground root system.

Despite its silver coated leaves, this creeping groundcover is no little treasure. 

This exotic, ginger-scented perennial with massive, taro-like rhizomes close to the surface has shiny leaves, and cream coloured flowers overlapping in cone-like clusters from May to June.

This Chinese climber is loved for its strong scent and delicate white flowers, and hated for its tough, vigorous, twining stems that rapidly swamp everything it grows over.

This smelly South American scrambler is happy sneaking its way through, under and over whatever plants and trees get in its way.

A very fast growing, though thankfully short lived tree - popping up on cliffs, banks, hillsides, slips and cuttings. 

Like a giant version of the much loved busy Lizzies, shrub balsam can reach up to 2m in height.

This tough South African import is not the sort of immigrant that our environment needs.

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