Where is it originally from?
Europe, Western Asia and North America
What does it look like?
Scrambling perennial (<10 m tall) with extensive roots, and roughly hairy stems with fine ridges. Broadly oval, unlobed or deeply 3-5 lobed leaves have serrated edges, are usually hairless above, and hairless to moderately hairy below with yellow glandular hairs. Male flowers are small, green, hairy, while female flowers are yellowish at fruiting, and form a distinctively smelling cylindric cone (hop) covered with yellow gladular hairs (Jan-Feb). Seeds form Feb-March in a dry husk.
Are there any similar species?
Several different varieties of Humulus lupulus are grown. The weedy variety is grown for the hop, used in brewing.
Why is it weedy?
Grows and matures rapidly, and takes root where it touches the ground. Produces many, long-lived seed. Tolerates damp to dry conditions, warm to cold, salt, damage.
How does it spread?
Limited, usually adjacent to cultivated or dumped plants. Gardens, crops, waste places, riverbanks, lax grassland.
What damage does it do?
Forms dense canopy cover, preventing native species establishing.
Which habitats is it likely to invade?
Disturbed forest, shrubland and margins, fernland, riverbanks.
What can I do to get rid of it?
1. Dig out small patches (all year round): dispose of at refuse transfer station, burn or bury.
2. Cut stem and paint stump (all year round): cut stem near to the ground, and swab freshly cut stump with metsulfuron-methyl 600g/kg (1g/L). Leave aerial stems to die in air to prevent layering.
3. Overall spray (summer) (large patches on ground): metsulfuron-methyl 600g/kg (5g/10L).
What can I do to stop it coming back?
Follow up for 2 years. Replant bared sites to minimise seedlings.