Sydney Weeds Committe
If suddenly you notice your garden or the bush draped in a light
green cloak, pretty yet smothering, chances are you have the noxious
weed, Balloon Vine. If not controlled it will spread to cover trees,
fence and shed.
When young, the plants are seen heading skywards, perhaps up trees
or just into thin air, or trailing on the ground; when older, hanging
in cascades of hemp-like stems. Seedlings appear as a miniature
forest of delicate green, the taller plants beginning to elongate.
The softly hairy light-green leaves are divided into leaflets with
ragged edges. From the stem at the base of each leaf stalk coils
a wiry tendril. The thin stems are green and covered in light brown
hairs, while the thick older stems are greyish and rough to the
The flowers in mid-summer are small and white. These develop into
the surest identifying feature: pale, papery, balloon-like cases
about 4cm diameter, each containing three black seeds.
Noxious Weed Category:
Control & Removal Methods
Pull out seedlings and young plants and dig out the roots of mature
vines. The vines up high will die when their stems are cut, and
can be left. However if you prefer not to have dead drapery whilst
the old vine breaks down, it can be pulled off without breaking
your host plant by either getting up there and cutting it away,
or pulling it like hauling in a fishing net, swinging the support
tree (if it is supple) and pulling strongly and carefully as the
tree swings towards you (and coiling the “rope”). Move
to different sides of the tree as needs be, so not to pull branches
back towards the trunk and break them.
Bin the seedcases. Cut up and compost the rest or put it out with
Council’s Green Waste collection.