Weeds threatening native flora and fauna on Matiu/Somes Island in Wellington Harbour.

Have you seen these plants on Matiu/Somes Island?

Weeds threaten the structure, function and composition of indigenous plant and animal communities on Matiu/Somes Island.

The following plants pose some of the most serious threats but are not established on Matiu/Somes.

With your help we can spot them and stop them before they become established.

Boneseed. Photo: Jeremy Rolfe.


Boneseed (Chrysanthemoides monilifera) is a bushy, much-branched shrub or small tree, growing to 3 metres tall. It can rapidly colonise and replace low coastal vegetation, spreading into shrublands and coastal forest.


Holly-leaved senecio. Photo: John Sawyer.
Holly-leaved senecio

Holly-leaved senecio

Holly-leaved senecio (Senecio glastifolius) is an erect herb from the daisy family that grows 1–2 metres tall. It invades coastal areas, where it can disrupt natural processes by displacing low-growing herbs, and ferns and preventing establishment of native seedlings.


Climbing asparagus. Photo: Department of Conservation.
Climbing asparagus

Climbing asparagus

Climbing asparagus (Asparagus scandens) is a scrambling or climbing plant with fine fern-like foliage, white flowers and orange/red berries. It invades coastal and lowland areas smothering both small and large plants.


Wandering willie. Photo: Jeremy Rolfe.
Wandering willie

Wandering willie

Wandering willie (Tradescantia fluminensis) is a dark green, succulent, ground- cover plant. It can form dense 50-centimetre-thick carpets that smother low-growing plants and prevent regeneration of taller plants.


African clubmoss. Photo: Tom White.
African clubmoss

African clubmoss

African clubmoss (Selaginella kraussiana)is a small, fern-like ground- cover plant that can form a thick carpet in forest remnants. It prevents the development of young seedling trees, and smothers plants on the forest floor such as native orchids, small ferns and mosses.


Mexican daisy. Photo: Chris Buddenhagen.
Mexican daisy

Mexican daisy

Mexican daisy (Erigeron karvinskianus) is a ground-cover plant from the daisy family.
It invades open habitats, growing on banks, cliffs, forest margins and streamsides, where it prevents regeneration of native species and smothers low-growing plants.


Weeds can be transported to Matiu/Somes Island on your clothing and bags.

  • Check your clothes and equipment before landing to make sure that no seeds, plant material or soil are stuck to them.
  • Take particular care when checking the soles of your shoes, socks, pockets and packs.
  • Do not dispose of plants and seeds on or near Matiu/Somes.
  • Control weeds in your own garden.

These species also pose a serious threat to native plants on the mainland. If you have any of these weeds in your garden contact the Department of Conservation or your local council for the best control methods.


If you want more information about pest plants, or wish to report infestations on Matiu/Somes Island of any of the species described in this factsheet, contact:

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