Black-eyed Susan
Acanthaceae - Thunbergia alata

What does it look like?

Climbing vine with twining stems which typically grows to 1-3m tall (depending on what it is growing on usually, e.g. tree/fenceline). Heart or arrow-shaped, fuzzy leaves.

Favours sun to partial shade. Soft orange and black five-petal blooms appear in late spring/early summer, mid summer and again in late summer, early autumn. Flowers appear as early as six weeks after germination. 

Why is it a problem?

Black-eyed Susan is a prolific seeder in warmer areas of New Zealand, often found smother vegetation on forest margins and on streamsides. This result in native trees recieving little little, inhibiting growth. Seedlings of native plants which would have grown in it's place are also inhibited, due to lack of ground space and light. Also unsightly and a nuisance in gardens.

Control Methods

Physical control:

  • Can be hand removed, however care needs to be taken to dig out all the roots.

Herbicide control:

  • Cut and paint vine stumps with Metgel (Cut'n'Paste).