Arum lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica)



Arum lily is an ornamental plant that is declared noxious on Lord Howe Island, where it  has become invasive. It is a significant environmental weed in WA and Vic, becoming problematic in NSW, SA and Tas. It spreads quickly in damp areas. 


Arum lily is highly toxic to humans, and can cause serious illness and death if ingested. All parts of the plant, especially the flower, are poisonous and cause swelling of the mouth, acute gastritis and diarrhoea leading to exhaustion and shock. It can also cause eczema and dermatitis. 

What to do if poisoning occurs:

  • If the patient is unconscious, unresponsive or having difficulty breathing dial 000 or get to the emergency section of a hospital immediately.
  • If the patient is conscious and responsive call the Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26 or your doctor.
  • If going to a hospital take a piece of the plant for identification.


Arum lily has large, fleshy arrow shaped leaves with a large, white funnel-shaped flower on long stem.

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Herbicide options

Contact your local council weeds officer for control advice for Arum lily (Zantedeschia aethiopica).

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Biosecurity duty

The content provided here is for information purposes only and is taken from the Biosecurity Act 2015 and its subordinate legislation, and the Regional Strategic Weed Management Plans (published by each Local Land Services region in NSW). It describes the state and regional priorities for weeds in New South Wales, Australia.

Area Duty
All of NSW General Biosecurity Duty
All plants are regulated with a general biosecurity duty to prevent, eliminate or minimise any biosecurity risk they may pose. Any person who deals with any plant, who knows (or ought to know) of any biosecurity risk, has a duty to ensure the risk is prevented, eliminated or minimised, so far as is reasonably practicable.

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Reviewed 2014