Preliminary management has been carried out in Australia and New Zealand. In Australia, Acanthus mollis has been noted to require control measures in three or less locations, while it has been included in a list of species requiring research as part of a pest management plan in New Zealand. (ARPS 2007-2012; Groves et al. 2003).
Location Specific Management Information
Auckland Region (North Island)
A. mollis has been included in the Auckland Regional Pest Strategy (2007-2012). While not considered a pest, A. mollis is included in Part V of this document, i.e. A. mollis is a species requiring further research to determine any possible negative effects on biodiversity in the future (ARPS 2007-2012).
A. mollis is known to be a problem requiring control measures in three or less locations in Australia (Groves et al. 2003).
Bay of Plenty Region (North Island)
A. mollis is considered a 'garden escapee' in the Bay of Plenty region, and it is suggested that native species Chatham Is. forget-me-not (Myosotidium hortensia), piu piu (Blechnum discolor) and harakeke (Phormium tenax) be planted instead. Other non-native alternatives suggested are leopard plant (Ligularia tussilaginea) and lady's mantle (Alchemilla mollis) (Weedbusters 2009).
Manawatu-Wanganui Region (North Island)
A. mollis is listed in the Horizons Regional Council pest management strategy as a plant species it may control under the site-led management programme (Horizons Regional Council 2007).
The National Pest Plant Accord of New Zealand reports that A. mollis received a DOC weediness score of 19, and also carried out their own weed risk assessment (WRA). Although, a conservative estimate due to some unknown variables, the result for that WRA was 17 ('reject') (NPPA 2008).
Northland Region (North Island)
A. mollis was assessed for the Nothland region by Williams in 2008, receiving a 'Biological success and ecological impact' rating of 18, and a score of 8 for Eisler's index of weediness (Williams 2008).
The Victorian Government Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE Vic) carried out a weed risk assessment for A. mollis for the Ranges, Inland Plains, coastal plains and heathy forests bioregions. A. mollis was rated as a 'lower risk weed' for all bioregions. (DSE Vic 2009a,b,c).
Several cities in Victoria also have policies regarding A. mollis:
Frankston City Council, Victoria, classes A. mollis as a sleeper weed, and asks residents to avoid planting A. mollis within 500 m of a natural reserve, waterway or significant environmental region (Frankston City Council undated).
Residents of Yarra City are not to use A. mollis in landscape works, as it is a potential weed (Yarra City Council 2009).
4. Hastwell, Graeme T. & Panetta, F. Dane, 2005. Can differential responses to nutrients explain the success of environmental weeds? Journal of Vegetation Science 16: 77-84, 2005
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