Ruapehu-Whanganui News & Events

Velvetleaf Weed Management
Katrina Thomas

Velvetleaf Weed Management

Velvetleaf is a pest weed that's been found on farms across New Zealand and why it is such a huge problem on farm.

Biosecurity New Zealand want your help to stop its spread.

Velvetleaf (Abutilon theophrasti) is present on a number of properties throughout New Zealand.

It's a serious cropping weed that can affect many arable crops.

Velvetleaf has been reported as causing up to 70% reduction in crop yields overseas.

We're working to increase public knowledge on how to effectively manage velvetleaf and prevent its spread.

We're also supporting land occupiers and rural contractors to take personal responsibility for controlling velvetleaf and reducing the risk of spread.

Why Velvetleaf is such a big problem for farms

Velvetleaf is difficult to control – it's resistant to many herbicides, and normal weed management practices don't work at controlling it. It keeps emerging over summer and autumn, and its seeds can survive for up to 50 years. Seeds can lie dormant in soil and then germinate years later. This often happens in response to cultivation and movement of soil. A single plant can drop up to 33,000 seeds.

For more information and to report it

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