Fireweed was first detected in Collingwood Park in the late 1980s and can now be found throughout all of the Ipswich local government area.

As an introduced species, Fireweed is invasive and can be poisonous to livestock. It competes with pasture grasses, reducing the viability of agricultural production.

The management of Fireweed requires long term commitment, there is no quick fix.

Don’t let your infestation get out-of-hand

Heavy infestations of fireweed often result from neglect of steadily increasing fireweed infestations in previous years, and lack of good ground cover caused by overgrazing, drought, fire or slashing.

Make a plan

Although landowners are not required to develop a property pest management plan, effective planning is an extremely useful management tool. Developing a pest management plan will help you:

  • effectively control invasive plants on your property
  • comply with the Biosecurity Act to show you are meeting your general biosecurity obligations (GBO)
  • coordinate weed control activities with your neighbours
  • integrate pest animal control activities with weed control activities and other components of your property plan
  • improve efficiency by prioritising control activities using resources at optimal times
  • monitor how well control activities are working and communicate achievements.

A property plan should focus on the extremities of your infestation and work inwards from there. The idea is to first contain your infestation (to stop spread into clean areas or other properties) and then reduce your infestation gradually, making it easier to manage with each treatment.

Use herbicides at the right time

Herbicides can be expensive. Their effectiveness will depend on their application rates and the stage in the plant’s lifecycle that you apply the herbicide. While there are herbicides that target all stages in the lifecycle, cost can depend on the application stage.

While you should always refer to the label, an inexpensive and practical solution is to use the herbicide 2,4-D 625g/L at an application rate of 300 mL/100 L water or 3 L/ha. This is very effective against Fireweed in the early stages of its lifecycle (when the plant appears as a dark green herb growing above the grass cover before it flowers).

Learning to identify the plant and treating it before it flowers provides a double benefit in that it reduces your cost and the application rate of your herbicide. This will usually reduce instances of seed proliferation, which will reduce your treatment costs overall.

Chip out and bag isolated plants and dispose at a Recycling & Refuse Centre

Removing individual plants is appropriate for infestations that are small or isolated and can be a useful form of control in environmental areas.

Even after being removed, flowering plants can still provide viable seed. All parts of the plant, especially the flowers, should be placed in a plastic garbage bag that is sealed prior to transport.

Gloves should be worn when removing or handling fireweed plants.

Bags of fireweed can be taken to your nearest Recycle and Refuse Centre

Apply for a permit to dispose of your Fireweed without incurring a fee

A permit to dispose of Fireweed at a council waste facility is available to landholders upon application. To apply for a permit Contact Council by one of the methods below:

Permit requirements:

  • The matter must be transported directly to the facility within a securely tied, sturdy, plastic garbage bag/s
  • The matter must not be mixed with any other waste (including other green waste), or fees will apply to the disposal
  • No more than two cubic metres of matter are permitted on each visit to the transfer station
  • The permit must be able to be presented to the operators of the waste facility on every occasion the matter is disposed of.

For more information, download our Fireweed Fact Sheet