Velvet groundsel
Roldana - Roldana petasitis

What does it look like?

Velvet groundsel is a large shrub or bush up to 2m tall.  It has round, lobed, hairy leaves that are up to 20cm across and feel soft and velvety to the touch.  Its stems are also hairy and are usually reddish in colour.  During July to November it is covered in bunches of small, bright-yellow, daisy-like flowers.  When flowering has finished there are numerous white fluffy seedheads.

Velvet groundsel prefers disturbed, open sites such as forest margins, shrublands, roadsides, quarries, and wasteland.  It can also be found in private gardens.

Why is it a problem?

Velvet groundsel is fast growing and produces many seeds.  Its fast growth rate means it can outcompete other plant species, smothering them and shading them out.  It can also spread over the forest floor, preventing the regeneration of native seedlings.  It prefers open sites but is semi-tolerant of shady conditions.

Velvet groundsel produces large numbers of seeds.  It can also grow from stem fragments and where stems touch the soil they can take root.

Control Methods

Pull up small plants when not in seed. Cut larger plants back to ground level and paint stumps with picloram gel. Dispose of all plant material at a refuse transfer station.

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