Native to: Australia, New Guinea
Carrotwood was introduced into Florida as early as the 1960s for use as an ornamental tree. It has since escaped cultivation as its seeds are readily dispersed by birds. Carrotwood invades natural areas, forming dense monocultures, crowding out and out-competing native plants for available light and nutrients.
Carrotwood invades spoil islands, beach dunes, marshes, tropical hammocks, pinelands, mangrove and cypress swamps, scrub habitats and coastal strands, where it greatly alters understory habitat. Carrotwood is a prolific seed producer and the brightly colored fruits are very attractive to birds which disperse it widely.
Carrotwood is not recommended by UF/IFAS. It is a prohibited plant according to the FDACS Florida Noxious Weed Index. The UF/IFAS Assessment lists carrotwood as prohibited in all parts of the state. It is listed by FLEPPC as a Category l invasive species due to its ability to invade and displace native plant communities.
Regular monitoring and removal of plants can prevent the spread and establishment of carrotwood. Programs to educate homeowners on proper plant identification will also reduce the spread of this species. Plant native alternatives including paradise tree (Simarouba glauca), pigeon plum (Coccoloba diversifolia) and Florida Cupania (Cupania glabra).
Remove seed pods if possible and pull seedlings. Hand-pulling and removal of entire plants, particularly the roots, is practical for small infestations.
Cut and remove existing trees and seedlings.
There are no known biological control agents for carrotwood.
*Note label restrictions with respect to high-tide mark and use extra caution near mangroves