Protect our environment from the illegal online trade of noxious weeds

Use the online reporting form to report a State prohibited weed.

Report a State prohibited weed

‘Noxious weeds’ are weeds that are considered harmful to our environment and agriculture. In Victoria, it is illegal to buy, sell, import, transport, or display for sale any noxious weeds that are declared under the Catchment and Land Protection Act 1994.

Some noxious weeds, such as water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes) and salvinia (Salvinia molesta), are very attractive and are sold online as ornamental plants. Noxious weeds can spread very quickly and harm native plants, waterways, wildlife and agriculture, so it’s important to not buy or sell them.

More information and a full list of Victoria's declared noxious weeds.

Why selling noxious weeds is illegal

The online trade of noxious weeds allows them to spread quickly.

Once a weed is introduced into a new area, it quickly spreads and infests the area, threatening agriculture, the environment and social activities such as boating, swimming and fishing. Even weeds kept in a backyard can be easily spread by wind carrying seeds or by plant parts being picked up and transported by animals (e.g. birds).

Once established, these infestations can be costly and very hard to control.

The most common noxious weeds traded online

Some of the most common noxious weeds that have been found for sale online are the Victorian State prohibited weeds, the highest category of noxious weeds. State prohibited weeds pose a major threat to Victoria’s agriculture sector, natural environment and broader social activities, and are actively managed with the aim of eradicating them from the state.

State prohibited weeds water hyacinth and salvinia are two of the world’s worst water weeds and are sometimes sold online as ornamental aquatic or water plants. These water weeds quickly spread to cover and block waterways, which harms native plants and wildlife and reduces water quality for farming and recreation activities, such as boating and water skiing.

Water hyacinth plant with purple flowers and green leaves.

Salvinia plant showing green and yellowed leaves.

To learn more about these harmful water weeds, visit:

How you can help

If you see a declared noxious weed for sale online, please don't contact the seller yourself. Agriculture Victoria will follow up on your report and arrange for the effective removal of the weeds.

Please report by:

Page last updated: 29 Apr 2022