Khaki weed (Alternanthera pungens)

Khaki weed is a thick ground cover with spiny burrs that can injure people and animals. It can contaminate crops and devalue wool.


How does this weed affect you?

Native of Brazil, Ecuador, Peru and Venezuela khaki weed is a prostrate herb with perennial root system with annual above ground growth.

Khaki weed spreads by seed within spiny bracts that adhere to tyres, clothing and animals. Local spread may also occur through spreading stems that root at nodes. Widespread in wasteland, caravan parks, orchards and recreation areas. Spines are a problem with dogs and stock but are particularly troublesome to humans and readily penetrate skin.

More information

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Herbicide options

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

See Using herbicides for more information.

2,4-D 300 g/L + Picloram 75 g/L (Tordon® 75-D)
Rate: 650 mL in 100 L of water
Comments: Active growth in full leaf.
Withholding period: 1-8 weeks (see label).
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
Resistance risk: Moderate

2,4-D amine 625 g/L (Various products)
Rate: 1.1 – 2.2 L/ha
Comments: Seedlings only.
Withholding period: 7 days.
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
Resistance risk: Moderate

2,4-D LV ester 680g/L (Estercide® Xtra)
Rate: 800 mL to 1.15 L per hectare
Comments: Boom spray application for young seedlings
Withholding period: Do not graze or cut for stock food for 7 days after application.
Herbicide group: I, Disruptors of plant cell growth (synthetic auxins)
Resistance risk: Moderate

Amitrole 250 g/L + Ammonium thiocyanate 220 g/L (Various products)
Rate: 1.1 L in 100 L of water
Comments: Spot spray. Actively growing plants.
Withholding period: Nil
Herbicide group: Q, Bleachers: Inhibitors of carotenoid biosynthesis unknown target
Resistance risk: Moderate

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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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For technical advice and assistance with identification please contact your local council weeds officer.
For further information call the NSW DPI Biosecurity Helpline on 1800 680 244 or send an email to

Reviewed 2018