Environment


Broad Leaf Privet

Botanical name: Ligustrum lucidum
Noxious Weed Category: Class 4
Special note: This weed, while having pretty flowers, is highly allergenic and can cause asthma attacks, allergic rhinitis and hay fever.

Broad Leaf Privet Broad Leaf Privet
Photo: Ku-ring-gai Council

Description

Also known as Large-leaf Privet, Tree Privet and Glossy Privet.
Originating from China and Japan, Broad Leaf Privet is a very common large shrub to small tree from 4 to 10m tall. It is robust, vigorous, evergreen, and fast growing. Found in moist, nutrient rich sites such as gullies.

Stems are covered in lenticels (white dots). Large dark green leaves are oval with a pointed tip, up to 13cm long and 5cm wide. They are arranged opposite on the stem. The leaves have a paler dull underside and a smooth margin.

Abundant small, white, and strongly scented tubular flowers produced in clusters in summer.
Sprays of small round purple-black berries occuring in summer and persisting into winter.

Dispersal

Seed is spread by fruit-eating birds, and is also washed down waterways.

Impact on bushland

Spread by birds, it can infest shale soils in relatively undisturbed bushland. Grows quickly and casts heavy shade under which little else can grow.

Control Measures

The growth of the plant must be managed in a manner that reduces its numbers, spread and incidence and continuously inhibits its flowering and reproduction.

Control

Manual:

  • Privet should be removed with caution. Wear clothes that cover up as much skin as possible. Wear gloves and work carefully.
  • Small plants and seedlings can be manually controlled.
  • Dig up as much of the main root system as possible to discourage suckering.
  • Large specimens can be cut and painted, or scraped and painted, applying an undiluted glyphosate based product.

See Manual Weed Control Techniques.

Chemical: Please contact your local control authority for advice on chemical control.

Similar species

May be confused with the native Lilly Pilly (Acmena smithii). The Lilly Pilly has oil glands in its leaves.

Suggested alternatives

  • Blueberry Ash (Elaeocarpus reticulatus) to 8m
  • Lilly Pilly (Acmena Smithii) to 10m - see the Look-a-likes booklet
  • Water Gum (Tristaniopsis laurina) to 8m or greater
  • Cheese Tree (Glochidion ferdinandi) to 12m, and Fried Egg Plant (Gordonia axillaris) to 5m
  • Mock Olive - see the Look-a-likes booklet

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