Macquarie Valley Weeds Committee & Lachlan Valley Weeds Advisory Committee


African Boxthorn

[Back] [New Search]

Botanical Name: Lycium ferocissimum
Other Common Names:


Class Regions
Class 4Bland Shire Council,Bogan Shire Council,Bourke Shire Council,Brewarrina Shire Council,Broken Hill City Council,Cabonne Council,Castlereagh Macquarie County Council,Central Darling Shire Council,Cobar Shire Council,Cootamundra Shire Council,Cowra Council,Dubbo Regional Council,Forbes Shire Council,Lachlan Shire Council,Mid-Western Regional Council,Narromine Shire Council,NSW DPI - Lands - Far West Region,Orange City Council,Parkes Shire Council,Upper Macquarie County Council,Weddin Shire Council,Wellington
Landholder Responsibilities: Growth and spread of the plant must be controlled according to the measures specified in a management plan published by the local control authority and the plant may not be sold, propagated or knowingly distributed
Why Is It Bad?: Dense thickets form if it is not controlled. Dense thickets exclude all other vegetation including pasture species. Dense thickets hinder stock mustering. Dense thickets deny stock access to watering points such as dams and rivers. Feral animals find harbour in African Boxthorn, increasing their potential for breeding. African Boxthorn fruit provide ideal breeding condition for fruit fly and dried fruit beetle, which threaten local fruit and vegetable growers. Thickets reduce available feed for stock and provide no feed value itself. Natural environment values are highly threatened by infestations of African Boxthorn, reducing biodiversity.


Habit: Shrub
Leaves: Obovate or elliptic, 10-40mm long, 4-10mm wide, glabrous, bright green and slightly fleshy
Flowers: Pale lilac to white, 5 petals and 8-12mm diameter. Flowering occurs throughout the year, peaking in spring-summer
Fruit: Dull orange-red berry, globose or broad-ovoid, 5-10mm diameter, with 35-70 seeds per berry. Fruiting mostly occurs during autumn-winter, but fruit can remain on the plant during other times of the year
Roots: Woody, branched taproot

Control Methods

Manual Removal: All parts of the plant must be removed and destroyed as broken root segments can sucker and regrow, and fruit can continue ripening on dead branches
Chemical Use: Different situations require different methods including foliar spray, basal bark treatment, cut stump treatment, and root application
Slashing & Cutting:
Biological Control:
Cultivation & Scalping:
Competition: Competition limits African Boxthorn´┐Żs ability to regenerate. Planting out treated sites with desired species increases competition and therefore increases the potential success of the management program
Monitoring: Successful treatment programs rely on ongoing monitoring of sites. Regrowth and new seedlings can easily become larger infestations if follow-up treatments are not part of the management program


Click an image to view a larger version

Image Credit: Ashley Bullock

Image Credit: Megan Power

Image Credit: Megan Power

Image Credit: Megan Power

Image Credit: Megan Power

Content © Copyright 2008 - 2024 Macquarie Valley Weeds Committee and Lachlan Valley Weeds Advisory Committee.
Site design & development by C.A. & G.C. Capper