The pom pom weed is an erect perennial with green stems up to 1,3m high. It dies back annually to a root crown. Pink flowerheads surrounded by purple bracts in compact heads appear from December to March. This plant is native to Central and South America.
- Common name: Pom pom weed
- Scientific name: Campuloclinium macrocephalum (Asteraceae)
- Alternative common names: Pompom bossie (Afrikaans)
- Where does this species come from: Central & South America (Mexico to Argentina)
- What is its invasive status in South Africa: Existing legislation: CARA 2002 – Category 1 NEMBA – Category 1b
- Where in South Africa is it a problem: Grassland regions of Gauteng, Kwazulu-Natal, Limpopo, Mpumalanga and the Eastern Cape Provinces
- How does it spread: It spreads easily by seed, and it can also regenerate from underground rhizomes
- Why is it a problem: It causes serious degradation of the veld, lowering the biodiversity and reducing the grazing capacity by being unpalatable to large herbivores
- What does it look like: General description: A tall erect perennial herb with pink fluffy flowerheads and leaves concentrated on the base of the plant. Bark: Green to purple covered with rough bristly hairs. Leaves: Light green with serrated margins and lance-shaped, becoming small and more distant upwards. Flowers: Pink and are produced in dense clusters at the end of aerial stems, flower-head consists of hundreds of tiny, star shaped florets surrounded by purple bracts. Flowers in late summer during December-March. Fruit/Seeds: Brown, one-seeded achenes.
- Does the plant have any uses: Introduced for ornamental purposes but now a noxious weed
Pom pom weed – Campuloclinium macrocephalum (Asteraceae)