Agricultural introductions as a source of weeds: what have we missed?

Garry D. Cook, CSIRO, PMB 44, Winnellie, Northern Territory 0822, Australia.


Grice (2008) raised the issue of commercial weeds: those plants that have a real or perceived commercial value but which also impose a cost through their invasive potential. In this paper, I argue that, although it is recognized that most naturalized plants in Australia were deliberate introductions, there is widespread ignorance about the perceptions of commercial value that lead to their introduction. Such ignorance is likely to lead to insufficient weighting being given to the threats posed by trials of potential new crop and pasture species and varieties. In this paper, I provide case studies of several taxa for which good records exist of their introduction for potential commercial agricultural production, but for which recent literature appears ignorant of the history of their perceived value and deliberate introductions.


Plant Protection Quarterly (2008) 23 (2) 69-72.