Threat: High threat environmental weed.
Description: Invasive climbing plant with large fleshy green leaves forming a yellow curtain when in flower. Scrambles over indigenous vegetation up to 5 metres and readily smothers low shrubs and understorey plants. Stems smooth green or purplish. Older parts turn woody.
Flowers: Slender yellow daisy heads with no prominent petals. Arranged in dense clusters of 15–40 on branched stalks. Sweetly fragrant, mainly in winter.
Leaves: Alternate, ivy shaped, 5–10cm long, broad with three to seven lobes. Glossy and fleshy leaves, lime green above and silvery below, often purple-tinged. Has paired kidney-shaped green ‘blades’ at base of large leaf stalks when young.
Stems: Weak evergreen stems growing to 5–10m long or forming a loose mat to 30cm thick. Purplish when young, green-creamy brown and woody with age, warty.
Fruits: Tiny seeds with a crown of hairs that easily breaks off.
Note: Cape Ivy has been used as a garden ornamental, for screening and on fences. Found in creek valleys and moist areas. Seeds readily dispersed by wind.
Control measures: Hand weeding, cut and paint with suitable herbicide, spot spraying, mulching/smother, scrape and paint with suitable herbicide.