Mother of Millions

Bryophyllum delagoense

Family: Crassulaceae

Type of weed:

Noxious Weed Class 4. (See more noxious weeds).

Flowering Months: , , , , ,

Description

A perennial herb to 1 m high.

Leaves are notched near the apex, 2–15 cm long, succulent (fleshy), without a stalk (sessile).

Plants have a flat-topped cluster of drooping, bell-shaped, orange-red to scarlet, four-lobed flowers, 2–3 cm long. It flowers mainly winter to spring. The plant is conspicuous when it flowers.

The fruit is a dry capsule containing many seeds.

The plant is like a chameleon; it is green coloured if growing in grass and brown coloured if growing in rocky areas.

Mother of Millions is toxic when ingested by livestock; it is also poisonous to humans and household pets.

Dispersal

By seed and from every part of the cylindrical leaves.

Impact on bushland

The plant spreads easily and invades bushland, forming a thick carpet.

Distribution

, . Whole of Local Government Area.

Alternative planting

Native plants

Council provides a tool, on its Mountain Landscapes website, to help you choose native alternative plantings. Choose your village, soil, vegetation community and the purpose of your planting, and the tool will give you suggestions.

There are native nurseries in several Blue Mountains villages, including Glenbrook, Lawson and Katoomba. Please also ask at your favourite local nursery.

Control

A well planned approach is needed to treat this weed and ensure it is not spread further during treatment or disposal. Follow-up treatment is needed for many years.

  • Hand remove plants carefully, loosening the soil with a knife or trowel. Ensure all pieces are removed and disposed of.
  • Spray with herbicide when plants are actively growing. Treatment is not always completely successful; monitor and regular follow-up is required.

For more info

For key points on these techniques:

Noxious Weed Class 4

Locally Controlled Weeds

Characteristics: Class 4 noxious weeds are plants that pose a threat to primary production, the environment or human health, are widely distributed in an area to which the order applies and are likely to spread in the area or to another area.

Control objective: Minimise the negative impact of those plants on the economy, community or environment of NSW.

Example control requirements: The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that reduces its numbers, spread and incidence, and continuously inhibits its reproduction. The plant may not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed.

NSW Noxious Weeds Act 1993

Refer to the NSW Department of Primary Industry’s Noxious and Environmental Weed Control Handbook.