Broad-leaf privet

Native to Japan and China, broad leaf privet is an evergreen shrub. It is regularly seen in ornamental gardens throughout South East Queensland. Broad-leaf privet invades riparian vegetation and disturbed sites and displaces rainforest species.

Broad-leaf privet is a restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014.

Scientific name

Ligustrum lucidum

Similar species

  • Sweet pittosporum

Description

  • Evergreen shrub up to 10m tall.
  • Branches are closely packed.
  • Leaves are dark green, broad, leathery, 4-13cm long, 3-6cm wide, with pointed tips, growing in opposite pairs.
  • Flowers are tubular, cream or white, 3.5-6mm long, with sickly sweet fragrance.
  • Berries are black, 9mm long, 12mm in diameter, occur in dense bunches.

Habitat

  • Prefers warm, humid environments.
  • Found around creeks, gullies and drainage lines.

Distribution in Queensland

  • Found throughout South East Queensland.

Life cycle

  • Can live for up to 100 years.
  • Produces up to 10 million seeds each growing season.
  • Seeds survive in soil 1-2.5 years.

Affected animals

Humans

Impacts

Environmental

  • Displaces rainforest species.
  • Invades riparian vegetation and disturbed sites.
  • Forms thickets, destroying native animal habitat.

Social

  • Irritates hay fever sufferers.

How it is spread

  • Fruit eaten and dispersed by birds.
  • Seeds can spread by flowing water.

Control

Physical control

  • Control by mowing or hand-pulling.
  • But be aware that regrowth can occur when taproot is broken by hand-pulling.

Herbicide control

  • Herbicides can be effective.

See the Broad-leaf or tree privet fact sheet (PDF, 1.0MB) for herbicide control and application rates.

Biological control

  • No known biological control agents.

Legal requirements

  • Broad-leaf privet is a restricted invasive plant under the Biosecurity Act 2014.
  • It must not be given away, sold, or released into the environment without a permit.
  • The Act requires everyone to take all reasonable and practical steps to minimise the risks associated with invasive plants and animals under their control. This is called a general biosecurity obligation (GBO).
  • At a local level, each local government must have a biosecurity plan that covers invasive plants and animals in its 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.

More information