Landowners Asked To Help Weed Out Blackberry

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Benalla Rural Council is currently undertaking blackberry control works across the municipality as part of its ongoing Roadside Weed and Pest Plan, and landholders are asked to follow suit while conditions are favourable.

Blackberry is a highly invasive species which is a serious concern for local farmers, land holders and public land users and is recognised as a Weed of National Significance (WoNS) in Australia.

Mayor Cr Danny Claridge said that blackberry control is important to protect both natural environments and agricultural land.

“Blackberry has a high degree of invasiveness and spread, threatening agricultural and natural ecosystems by dominating other crops in its vicinity as well as natural vegetation,” Cr Claridge said.

“Blackberry is frequently found across the Benalla municipality, and we treated 117 sites as part of our previous round of blackberry treatments.”

Cr Claridge said that everyone has a legal role to play in managing weeds on their land, irrespective of whether that land is public or private.

“All landholders have requirements under the Catchment Land and Protection Act 1994 (CaLP Act) to take all reasonable steps to prevent the growth and spread of Blackberry and other noxious weeds,” Cr Claridge said.

“There is a small window of opportunity in Autumn to treat the weed to get the best results,” Cr Claridge said.

The best time and methods for blackberry weed control is spraying once fruiting has finished which is now, between Spring and Autumn. Other control methods include hand pulling the weed in Summer and digging the weed out in Winter.

Cr Claridge said recent weather had been particularly favourable for blackberries to thrive.

“Unmanaged infestations in our area have been gradually expanding, mainly due to good seasonal conditions,” Cr Claridge said.

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