Fireweed Senecio scaberulus

Key Features

  • An erect, herbaceous daisy with strongly toothed, soft, velvety textured leaves that are silvery green in colour. Young plants form rosettes. At flowering, a loose cluster of narrow, yellow-tipped, daisy heads is formed, which gives rise to fluffy seeds that are dispersed by wind.

Distribution and Habitat

  • Northern North Island in coastal and inland areas, including clearings, lava flows, cliffs and canopy gaps in scrub and forest.


  • Habitat modification and loss.
  • Browsing by stock and feral animals.
  • Competition with exotic weeds.

Management Opportunities

  • Survey for new locations.
  • Mark known sites.
  • Protection of habitat.
  • Exclude browsing animals.
  • Weed control.
  • Reintroduction to appropriate sites within plantation forests.

Monitoring Options

  • Check existing populations annually.
  • Report new locations to DOC and NZPCN.

Further Information and Support

  • New Zealand Plant Conservation Network (NZPCN).
  • Weed and pest management - Department of Conservation, Regional Councils
  • References
    • Dopson, S.R.; de Lange, P.J.; Ogle, C.C.; Rance, B.D.; Courtney, S. & Molloy, J. (1999). The conservation requirements of New Zealand’s nationally threatened vascular plants. Threatened Species Occasional Publication 13. Department of Conservation, Wellington.
    • Peter de Lange, Peter Heenan, David Norton, Jeremy Rolfe and John Sawyer (2010). Threatened Plants of New Zealand. Canterbury University Press, Christchurch. 472 pp.