Mock orange

Mock orange is a bushy shrub native to southern China, Taiwan and far north Queensland. It is a popular garden plant.

In South East Queensland and Northern New South Wales the plant has become a pest invading native ecosystems.

Mock orange is not a prohibited or restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014.

Scientific name

Murraya paniculata

Other names

  • Honey bush, orange jasmine

Similar species

  • Native mock orange

Description

  • Bushy shrub up to 5m high.
  • Flowers are 10-18mm long, fragrant, white and in clusters.
  • Leaves are alternate, 6-12cm long, 3-9 leaflets, 1.5cm long and 1.3cm wide.
  • Each flower has five white petals, 10-18mm long.
  • Berries are small oval-shaped, up to 10mm long, bright orange or red.
  • Stems reach up to 13cm across and are hairless.

Habitat

  • Prefers native bushland, pastures, disturbed sites and along roadsides and waterways.
  • Commonly found in gardens.

Distribution

  • Found throughout South East Queensland.

Life cycle

  • Flowering occurs irregularly throughout the year, often brought on by rain, but commonly flowers from late winter to late spring.
  • Reproduces by seed.

Impacts

Environmental

  • Crowds out native vegetation forming dense populations.

Social

  • The pollen may cause allergic rhinitis and trigger airway conditions in susceptible people.

How it is spread

  • Spreads mainly by bird-dispersed seeds.
  • Can also spread by dumped garden waste.

Prevention

The best form of weed control is prevention. Treat weed infestations when they are small - do not allow weeds to establish.

Control

Mechanical control

  • Hand-pull newly established or isolated seedlings.
  • Remove newly established or isolated seedlings by grubbing, brush cutting or chain sawing.

Herbicide control

  • 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 visit the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority website.
Foliar application
  • Glyphosate 360 g/L (Roundup®): Foliar application for seedlings/ coppice shoots. Rate: 200 mL per 10 L of water. PERMIT 11463 - expires 30/06/2018.
Cut stump or stem injection application
  • Glyphosate 360 g/L (Roundup®): Stem injection/cut stump application, saplings to large shrubs. Rate: 1 part per 1.5 parts of water. PERMIT 11463 - expires 30/06/2018.
  • Picloram 44.7 g/kg + Aminopyralid 4.47 g/L (Vigilant II ®): Cut stump/stem injection application. Rate: Undiluted. Apply a 3–5 mm layer of gel for stems less than 20 mm. Apply 5 mm.

Biological control

  • There is no biological control agent available for this plant.

Legal requirements

  • Mock orange is not a prohibited or restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014. However, by law, everyone has a general biosecurity obligation (GBO) to take reasonable and practical steps to minimise the risks associated with invasive plants and animals under their control.
  • Local governments must have a biosecurity plan that covers invasive plants and animals in their area. This plan may include actions to be taken on certain species. Some of these actions may be required under local laws. Contact your local government for more information.

Further information