Yellow bells (Tecoma stans)

WEED ALERT: REGIONALLY PROHIBITED WEED
If you see this plant contact your council weeds officer, the NSW Invasive Plants & Animals Enquiry Line 1800 680 244 or email weeds@dpi.nsw.gov.au

Profile

Impact

Yellow bells invades riparian areas, edges of rainforest and eucalypt forest, open woodlands, grasslands, waste areas, sand dunes, agricultural land and other disturbed areas.

It can form dense stands which strongly compete with other species and reduces habitat for native animals.

Although palatable to stock, it reduces feed quality, restricts access for stock and machinery and competes with orchard plantings

It has the potential to be a serious weed of much of tropical and subtropical Australia. 

Distribution

Yellow bells is a native of tropical America.

It is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in subtropical and tropical areas of the world. It has become naturalised in Australia, southern Asia, Argentina, Brazil, South Africa and some oceanic islands.

Yellow bells was introduced into Australia as an ornamental plant and was first recorded as naturalised in 1973 near Roma in Queensland.

It is now commonly naturalised from Sydney north to Exmouth in north-western Western Australia. However, it has also been recorded near Renmark in South Australia.

Isolated infestations occur in coastal and floodplain areas on the NSW North Coast. Scattered infestations are found in and around along the Tweed coast, Alstonville, Byron Bay, Ballina, Kyogle, Coffs Harbour, Nambucca Heads and South West Rocks. A core infestation occurs in Lismore.

Distribution map

Spread

Yellow bells primarily reproduces from seed. These are primarily wind-borne, but are also spread by water and dumping garden waste.

Plants can also sucker, especially if damaged.

Seedlings mostly germinate in spring and summer.

Early growth is relatively rapid, with growth of up to 1 m in height in the first year. The main growth period is from spring to autumn, but green foliage is present year-round.

Flowering and fruiting occur year-round, but are chiefly from spring to autumn.

Description

Yellow bells is a large shrub or much-branched small tree 3-8 m tall, rarely to 10 m tall.

Bark is initially green and smooth, but becomes light brown to pale grey and grooved with age.

Leaves are pinnate with 3-13 leaflets. Leaflets are hairless and up 2.5-10 cm long, with serrated edges.

Flowers are borne in several-flowered clusters at or near the stem tips. Petals are bright yellow, tubular and 3-5 cm long, with reddish lines in the throat.

Fruit are 10-30 cm long, linear, bean-like pods. Pods are initially green then ripen to brown.

Seeds are paper, winged and to about 2.2 cm long.

Habitat

Yellow bells prefers sunny conditions in sub-tropical and tropical climates, which are free of heavy frosts, have 700-1800 mm annual rainfall.

It prefers well-drained soils with a light texture.

It is grows in riparian areas, edges of rainforest and eucalypt forest, open woodlands, grasslands, waste areas, sand dunes, agricultural land and other disturbed areas. It is also salt tolerant and is capable of becoming established in mangrove habitats.

Acknowledgements

Author: Harry Rose

Reviewers: Rod Ensbey, Elissa van Oosterhout

References

Australia’s Virtual Herbarium: Tecoma stans. http://avh.ala.org.au

BioNET Invasive Plants factsheet: Tecoma stans (Yellow Bells). http://keys.lucidcentral.org

Floridata: Tecoma stans. http://www.floridata.com

Jordan, S. (2007). Yellow Bells (Tecoma stans). Queensland Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. 

Weeds Australia: Golden Bells (Tecoma stans). http://www.weeds.org.au

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Control

The main methods of control are excluding plants from uninfested areas, physical removal of all plant parts, and herbicide application. Which method is appropriate depends on:

  • size and density of the infestation
  • accessibility
  • time and resources available
  • habitat infested.

Continued follow-up and re-treatment is essential for all control methods.

Physical control

Seedlings or small plants can be hand pulled in small-to-medium sized infestations, but the entire taproot must be removed to avoid regrowth.

Herbicide control

Herbicide applications are recommended for medium-to-large infestations, but can also be used for small infestations.

Herbicide options

WARNING - ALWAYS READ THE LABEL
Users of agricultural or veterinary chemical products must always read the label and any permit, before using the product, and strictly comply with the directions on the label and the conditions of any permit. Users are not absolved from compliance with the directions on the label or the conditions of the permit by reason of any statement made or not made in this information. To view permits or product labels go to the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority website www.apvma.gov.au

See Using herbicides for more information.


PERMIT 9907 Expires 31/03/2020
Glyphosate 360 g/L (Roundup®)
Rate: 1.0 L in 50 L of water
Comments: Spray seedlings.
Withholding period: Nil.
Herbicide group: M, Inhibitors of EPSP synthase
Resistance risk: Moderate


PERMIT 9907 Expires 31/03/2020
Glyphosate 360 g/L (Roundup®)
Rate: 1 part per 1.5 parts of water
Comments: Stem injection or cut stem application.
Withholding period: Nil.
Herbicide group: M, Inhibitors of EPSP synthase
Resistance risk: Moderate


Picloram 44.7 g/kg + Aminopyralid 4.47 g/L (Vigilant II ®)
Rate: Undiluted
Comments: Cut stump/stem injection application. Apply a 3–5 mm layer of gel for stems less than 20 mm. Apply 5 mm layer on stems above 20 mm .
Withholding period: Nil.
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
Resistance risk: Moderate


Triclopyr 240 g/L + Picloram 120 g/L (Access™ )
Rate: 1.0 L in 60 L of diesel
Comments: Basal bark/cut stump application.
Withholding period: Nil
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
Resistance risk: Moderate


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Legal requirements

The content provided here is for information purposes only and is taken from the Noxious Weeds (Weed Control) Order 2014 published in the NSW Government Gazette, detailing weeds declared noxious in New South Wales, Australia, under the Noxious Weeds Act 1993. The Order lists the weed names, the control class and the control requirements for each species declared in a Local Control Authority area.

Area Class Legal requirements
Bayside 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Bellingen 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Blue Mountains 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Burwood 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Camden 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Campbelltown 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Canada Bay 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Canterbury-Bankstown 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Clarence Valley 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Coffs Harbour 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Cumblerland 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed only in those areas formerly known as Auburn City and Holroyd Councils
Cumblerland 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread only in the area formerly known as Parramatta City Council
Fairfield 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Georges River 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Glen Innes Severn 2 Regionally Prohibited Weed
The plant must be eradicated from the land and that land must be kept free of the plant
Hawkesbury River County Council 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Hornsby 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Hunters Hill 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Inner West 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Kempsey 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Ku-ring-gai 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Lane Cove 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Liverpool 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Mid-Coast 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Mosman 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Nambucca 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
New England Tablelands County Council 2 Regionally Prohibited Weed
The plant must be eradicated from the land and that land must be kept free of the plant
North Sydney 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Northern Beaches 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Parramatta 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread only in the area formerly known as Parramatta City Council
Parramatta 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed except in the area formerly known as Parramatta City Council
Port Macquarie-Hastings 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Randwick 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Rous County Council 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Ryde 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Strathfield 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Sydney 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Tenterfield 2 Regionally Prohibited Weed
The plant must be eradicated from the land and that land must be kept free of the plant
Waverley 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Willoughby 4 Locally Controlled Weed
The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that continuously inhibits the ability of the plant to spread
Wollondilly 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed
Woollahra 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed

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Reviewed 2016