Skip to main content
Tasmanian Government - www.tas.gov.au
Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment
Structure of the Department
Careers at DPIPWE
Applying for a Job
Disability Access Plans
Personal Information Protection Policy
Public Interest Disclosures
Right to Information
RTI Disclosure Log
Investing in Irrigation
Farm Business Planning Tools
Enterprise Suitability Toolkit
Government and Community Programs
AgriGrowth Concessional Loans
Managing Seasonal Conditions
Women and Rural Communities
Identifying, Selling & Moving Livestock/NLIS
Codes of Practice & Guidelines
Spray Information and Incidents
Licences and Certificates
Chemical Registration and Permits
Land Management and Soils
Land Use Information
Facts and Figures
Weather and Climate
Traveller's Guide to Tasmanian Biosecurity - What You Can and Can't Bring into Tasmania
Latest Import Restrictions
Biosecurity Legislation Review
Current Biosecurity Threats
Animal Health Laboratories
Pest and Diseases
Plant Health Laboratories
Aquatic Pests and Diseases
Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome
Biosecurity Policy, Strategy & Publications
Biosecurity Policy, Strategy & Publications
Natural Heritage Strategy (2013-2030)
Flora of Tasmania
Lists of Threatened Species
Process for Listing Threatened Species
Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area
Development Planning & Conservation Assessment
Conservation on Private Land
Private Land Conservation Program
Bush Information and Management
Natural Resource Management
Publications, Forms and Permits
Bag and Size Limits
Area Restriction Maps
Licences and Seasons
Publications and Products
Tas Fishing Guide App
Subscribe to Fishing News
Recreational Fishing Guide
Fishes of Tasmania Posters
Hot Fishing Spots
Rulers and Guides
Report Illegal Fishing
Calendar of Events
Sustainable Fisheries Management
Fishery Advisory Committees
Research and Stock Assessments
Marine Farm Planning Proposals
Biotoxin Fishery Events
Cat Management in Tasmania
Information for Cat Owners
Tasmanian Cat Management Plan
Controlling Stray and Feral Cats
Legislation and Management Plans
Recently Declared Weeds
Publications and Information Resources
Land Titles Office
Strata Title Information
Power of Attorney
Office of the Valuer General
Objecting to a Statutory Valuation
Property Valuation Adjustment Factors
Fees & Charges
Geospatial Infrastructure & Surveying
Register of Tasmanian Surveyors
Central Plan Register
Emergency Services GIS
Place Naming in Tasmania
Rules and Processes
Spatial Discovery - Educational Resources for Schools
Water Management Forms
A Guide to Water in Tasmania
Legislation, Policies and Strategies
Applying for a Licence
Transferring Licences and Allocation
Water Management Regions
Overview of Groundwater
Well Works Permits
Water Management Plans
Water Monitoring and Assessment
Urban Water and Sewerage Sector
Fauna of Tasmania
Reptiles and Frogs
Marine Conservation Program
Save the Tasmanian Devil Program
Management of Wildlife
Recreational Game Licences
Managing Wildlife Browsing & Grazing Losses
Caring for Wildlife
Living with Wildlife
Forms and Permits
Aboriginal Heritage Tasmania
Analytical Services Tasmania
Animal Ethics Committee
Environment Protection Authority Tasmania (EPA)
Inland Fisheries Service Tasmania
Natural Values Atlas
Parks & Wildlife Service Tasmania
Port Arthur Historic Sites
Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens
Save the Tasmanian Devil
Threatened Species Link Tasmania
Water Information System of Tasmania (WIST)
Wellington Park Trust
Declared Weeds Index
Willow Control Guide
Willow Control Guide
Do's and don'ts of willow control
Willows can pose a very complex management problem - seek advice. Resources such as best practice management guides can help you plan your control program. Good planning will save time and money in the long-run and provide a more effective result;
If there is a chance that you are dealing with seeding willows, act immediately: seeding willows pose the highest threat;
Coordinate your control program with neighbouring landholders where your weed problem crosses property boundaries;
Take into account the impacts of your control activities on the stream as a whole, and on those living downstream;
Consider use a combination of different control methods for large infestations; and
Revisit and regularly inspect the site and ensure follow-up is undertaken.
Don't start your control program without first planning your approach;
Don't rely on one attempt at removal - follow-up is essential;
Don't rely on just one control method;
Don't take on too much at one time - many small steps may be better than one big attempt at control; and
Don't underestimate how much waste will be produced when you remove willows!
Spread of willow
Willows can spread in two ways: sexually, by seed germinating on wet sediment, and asexually, by twigs and branches travelling downstream and rooting on wet ground and in shallow water.
Spread by seed only occurs where compatible male and female plants flower at the same time and are close enough to cross pollinate (usually less than 2 km), and where there is wet ground available 1-2 months after seed shed (October to November).
Thousands of seeds are released over a short period in spring, so seedlings are typically found as 'galleries' or masses of similarly-sized seedlings growing close together.
Asexual spread can occur where branches and twigs break off and spread downstream, and through layering where trunks collapse and branches weep down and root where they touch the soil.
As rooted fragments can break off and establish at any time of year, this type of spread typically leads to plants of different ages and sizes.
In Tasmania, the widespread crack willow occurs only as male plants, and all spread is via fragmentation.
Willow management can be a long-term and expensive process, and eradication is not always either feasible or desirable.
Careful planning is therefore essential to avoid waste of resources, and to ensure the desired outcome is achieved.
Essential steps in planning willow control include: a clear objective (
you wish to achieve), a clear reason (
is it necessary),
is to be involved,
to conduct the works, and how you will
A first step in any control program will typically require mapping of the distribution and extent of an infestation, and the species of willow involved.
For large or complex infestations, it may also be necessary to priorotise areas and/or species. For example, seeding willows will usually be a very high priority, while areas of high conservation value or severe impact will attract a higher priority than areas of lower value or lesser impact.
Attention must also be given to what to do with the removed material. Remember that fragments of willow left behind may regenerate and un-do all the hard work of removal.
Finally, it is imperative to consider the potential impacts of any control actions on the river system itself, and to factor in revegetation where necessary and ongoing monitoring and follow-up control.
Willow seedlings and rooted fragments up to 2 years old can be removed by hand.
Larger trees will require machinery for physical removal. A range of machinery options are available depending on the site conditions. Always consider occupational health and safety when using machinery to remove willows!
On stream banks or other erodible sites root mass should be retained to limit erosion. This will require felling of stems and application of herbicide to the outer rings of the stump. Refer to the
Willow National Best Practice Manual
Generally, a combination of physical removal and chemical treatment provides best long-term results.
Waste management methods
Don't underestimate how much waste will be produced when you remove willows - willow removal produces and enormous amount of waste material which has to managed.
Currently there are only a few waste management methods available, including piling and burning (the most common method of removal), mulching (generally limited to smaller infestations), and feed to stock, furniture and firewood (useful for only small quantities of willow material).
Biological control is the use of a living species, usually an insect, mite or disease, to control a weed;
Biological control will not eradicate willow, but may be used in conjunction with other control methods;
No biological control agents for willow that released in Australia at the present time, although this approach has great potential as a willow management tool for the future.
For more information on biological control programs in Tasmania contact the
Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture
A number of herbicides are registered for use on willow in Tasmania. See
Herbicides for Willow Control
for more information.
Techniques include cut-and-paint and remove material, stem inject and leave material standing, and foliar spray and leave for seedlings up to 2 m.
To the extent permitted by law, the Tasmanian Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (including its employees and consultants) excludes all liability to any person for any consequences, including but not limited to all losses, damages, costs, expenses and any other compensation, arising directly or indirectly from using information or material (in part or in whole) contained on this website.
About the Department
Animal Ethics Committee
Environment Protection Authority (EPA)
Parks & Wildlife Service
Sea Fishing & Aquaculture
fruit fly declarations