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Hawkweed rosette

Hawkweed fl1

Hawkweed fl2

Crepis capill1

Crepis capill2

Crepis capill3

Picris ang1

Picris ang2

Picris ang3

Tolpis umbell1

Tolpis umbell2

Mauve burr-daisy plant

Mauve burr-daisy burr

Calotis pubescens plant

Calotis pubescens burr

Calotis scapigera


Hieracium species


Asteraceae (daisy family)


Hawkweeds are declared noxious in class 1 throughout NSW (local control authorities must be notified if the weed is detected, the weed eradicated and the land kept free of it). They are serious weeds of cool climate pastures and native vegetation at higher elevations in New Zealand, North America and Japan. Orange hawkweed (Hieracium aurantiacum) escaped from a garden in Falls Creek in the Victorian snowfields and attempts to eradicate it from this area have not succeeded yet. Infestations have also been found around the sites of old settlements in Kosciuszko National Park and attempts are being made to eradicate these. Orange hawkweed is on the federal government alert list of 28 environmental weeds which currently have a limited Australian distribution but show considerable weed potential. The complete eradication of these species from Australia is highly desirable.


Perennial herbs with a basal rosette of hairy leaves and branched flowering stem which may carry one or two small leaves. Orange hawkweed has orange daisy flowers which are surrounded by hairy blackish bracts. They are carried in a dense cluster at the tip of the flowering stem.


Fine wind-spread seed and by runners, forming dense mats.

Although a prohibited import in Australia they occasionally appear in nurseries. Pilosella aurantiaca is another name under which orange hawkweed has been sold. The yellow-flowered mouse-ear hawkweed (Hieracium pilosella) has been found naturalised in Tasmania, and other species may appear in nurseries.


The blackish hairy bracts on the buds and orange “petals” are distinctive to orange hawkweed. In growth form it is similar to a number of other weeds in the daisy family such as smooth hawksbeard (Crepis capillaris) and the native daisy Picris angustifolia but these are yellow flowered. However, the growth habit of numerous small rosettes connected by runners is not found in other weedy daisies with similar flowers. They consist of a single rosette, which may occur in groups but the individual plants would not be connected in any way.
The small weed Tolpis umbellata or T. barbata is sometimes referred to as yellow hawkweed, but it is not one of the Hieracium genus and is not listed as noxious in NSW.  It is generally only a minor weed of waste ground and roadsides.  There are some mat-forming native daisies, particularly on the tablelands and in the Alps.  Burr-daisies (Calotis species) can form dense, low mats, but these have purple, mauve or white flowers with "petals" in a single whorl, not multiple layers as in Hieracium.


Notify your local Council weeds staff if you see plants described as hawkweeds or Hieracium for sale or in a garden or if you suspect an infestation. Get plants identified and, if necessary, removed promptly. Prevent seeding or collect and destroy seed.

Download an information sheet below.

hawkweeds hawkweeds 327.5 KB