Chinese celtis (Celtis sinensis)

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
Also known as: celtis, hackberry

Profile

Impact

Chinese celtis is a large, invasive tree that has become an environmental weed and a potential weed of agriculture because of its ability to become structurally dominant. It rapidly colonises disturbed bushland, forms dense thickets, replaces native shrubs and trees and dominates riparian vegetation. Chinese celtis has been recognised and listed as a serious environmental weed by bush regeneration groups, Councils and the National Parks and Wildlife Service. The demonstrated ability of Chinese celtis in south-east Queensland to spread rapidly makes its control in north-eastern NSW a high priority.

Distribution

Chinese celtis is a native of China, Japan and Korea and was introduced into Australia as an ornamental and shade tree.  It is a major environmental weed in south-east Queensland, expanding rapidly over recent years into major infestations along riparian zones. 

Most established populations of Chinese celtis in the northern areas of NSW are in urban areas in both private gardens and public areas. Significant but controllable Chinese celtis infestations occur in bushland in and near Lismore, near Kyogle and the upper Richmond River Catchment, in the Tweed and in Coffs Harbour. It has also been found growing along the Manning River, at Taree and Bellingen.

Distribution map

Spread

Chinese celtis seeds are spread by birds feeding on its fruit in autumn and early winter. This enhances the dispersal of Chinese celtis throughout the disturbed, regenerating riparian zones.

Chinese celtis has also been promoted and planted as a shade and street tree, which has assisted in its spread over the years. 

Description

Chinese celtis is a large tree, growing up to 20 m tall,  with a spreading, moderately dense crown. It has a smooth, mottled grey bark with alternate, elliptical shaped leaves that are 4–7 cm long. The leaf margins are finely serrated in the upper half of the leaf.

In northern NSW it is deciduous or semi-deciduous in late winter and the dry early spring period.

Chinese celtis produces thousands of fleshy fruits that are approximately 7–8 mm in diameter. The fruits turn reddish brown to orange when ripe in autumn and early winter. Chinese celtis fruits during the same period as camphor laurel and similar birds feed on both species.

Habitat

Chinese celtis is reported to grow in a wide range of soils, perferring moist areas.  Current infestations are largely in riparian zones in areas originally supporting subtropical and dry rainforests.

Chinese celtis infestations initially develop in disturbed areas of riparian vegetation and in previously cleared and regenerating riparian zones. Regenerating riparian areas, also infested with camphor laurel and privet, are widespread along the north coast of NSW.

Acknowledgements

Author: Rod Ensbey

Editing and production by Bill Smith, Barry Jensen, Birgitte Verbeek and Annette McCaffery.

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Control

Chinese cleltis could be successfully controlled in NSW due to limited infestations. To do this, coordinated control must begin now while the opportunity exists.

The first step in a control program is to assess the weed problem and situation. A well planned management plan for Chinese celtis will include revegetation of the site after treatment with local native species, control of other weed species that may be present (e.g. privet, camphor laurel) and follow-up maintenance and re-treatment of the site.

Manual control

Manual removal of isolated small seedlings can be attempted by hand pulling or digging them up. This is only practical for a small number of plants. Large trees may be cut down and the stump dug up and removed.

Care should be taken to avoid moving fruit to uninfested areas when manually removing mature trees.

Herbicide control

Herbicide control is effective using the cut stump, basal bark or stem injection techniques. The method used depends on the site situation, tree size, access and personal preferences.

Currently in NSW there are a number of registered herbicides and an AVPMA permit covering the use of herbicides for Chinese celtis control.

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 part glyphosate to 50 parts water
Comments: Spray seedlings and coppice shoots.
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 glyphosate to 1.5 parts water
Comments: Cut stump/scrape stem application for saplings. Stem injection application large trees and shrubs.
Withholding period: Nil.
Herbicide group: M, Inhibitors of EPSP synthase
Resistance risk: Moderate


Fluroxypyr 333 g/L (Starane™ Advanced)
Rate: 21 mL per 1 L diesel
Comments: Basal bark application.
Withholding period: 7 days.
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
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


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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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Bellingen 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Camden 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Campbelltown 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Canada Bay 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Clarence Valley 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Coffs Harbour 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Fairfield 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Georges River 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Hornsby 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Inner West 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Kempsey 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Lane Cove 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Liverpool 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Mid-Coast 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Nambucca 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Port Macquarie-Hastings 3 Regionally Controlled Weed
The plant must be fully and continuously suppressed and destroyed and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Sutherland 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Tamworth Regional 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Wollondilly 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Woollahra 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 and the plant must not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed

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Reviewed 2014