CDU weeds out invasive plants

08-Jan-2018

Facilities Management Director Bill McGuinness holds coffee bush that was removed as part of Charles Darwin University’s new Weed Management Plan. Photo: Julianne Osborne

Facilities Management Director Bill McGuinness holds coffee bush that was removed as part of Charles Darwin University’s new Weed Management Plan. Photo: Julianne Osborne


Pest plants are in the line of fire, under a new scheme to annihilate four invasive species in the scrub at Charles Darwin University.

About 3.5 hectares of coffee bush have been cleared from Casuarina campus and the nearby banks of Rapid Creek, and a large area of gamba, mission and guinea grasses sprayed, under CDU’s new Weed Management Plan.

Facilities Management Director Bill McGuinness said implementing the plan was a critical step in CDU maintaining its role as a responsible corporate environmental citizen.

“We are looking to improve our environmental management processes long-term; this is about removing weeds, not chopping down trees,” he said.

“The landscape in some areas around campus has changed significantly with the removal of the coffee bush.

“Some sites were cleared using a forest mulcher, or machinery and a tub grinder; other sites closer to the creek can only be accessed on foot, and the weeds removed by hand. 

“We are now working with contractors and Greening Australia to determine the revegetation process, and discuss which native trees to plant.”

Mr McGuinness said an arborist would assess the health of remaining trees at sites that previously had a high volume of invasive weeds.

Eco Science NT was commissioned to develop the Weed Management Plan and has trained CDU ground maintenance staff in weed control.