Staff Profiles


R. H. Groves

Research Scientist
Ph.D., University of Melbourne, Australia, 1964




Phone (+61) 02 6246 5109
Fax: (+61) 02 6246 5249


CSIRO Plant Industry & CRC Australian Weed Management
GPO Box 1600
Canberra ACT 2601




My current research interests focus on different stages of the invasion process for plant species introduced to a region such as Australia. New incursions of plants continue, despite the effectiveness of quarantine measures. Many of the plants that naturalise were introduced deliberately to Australia years ago and have been grown since in gardens or as pasture species. A proportion of these then naturalise and spread to become major weeds. Some other species may remain naturalised for many years before apparently commencing to spread to become weeds. The latter are the so-called 'sleeper weeds' about which little is known currently. Weed management could become much more cost-effective (in terms of either money spent or in prevention of biodiversity loss) if such plant species could be identified and eradicated or contained before they became major weeds. Research in progress attempts to define some biological characteristics of 'sleeper weeds' that may enable more effective management of these species in the Australian naturalised flora.

Another current research interest is to review some selected case histories of eradication of certain plant species that are known to be major weeds outside Australia. Certain criteria that may favour successful eradication of such species from Australia may provide a basis for constructing a decision tree for weed eradication or effective containment. The latter aspect is being done collaboratively with colleagues in the Weeds CRC.

A long-standing interest in quantifying the impact of 'environmental weeds' on plant diversity continues, especially as it relates to Bitou bush and Bridal creeper and their biological control in coastal heathlands and Cumberland Plain woodlands, respectively.

  • Hull, V.J. and Groves, R.H. 1973. Variation in Chondrilla juncea L. in south-eastern Australia. Aust. J. Bot. 21: 113-135.

  • Groves, R.H. and Williams, J.D. 1975. Growth of skeleton weed (Chondrilla juncea L.) as affected by growth of subterranean clover (Trifolium subterraneum L.) and infection by Puccinia chondrillina Bubak & Syd. Aust. J. Agric. Res. 26: 975-983.

  • Burdon, J.J., Groves, R.H. and Cullen, J.M. 1981. The impact of biological control on the distribution and abundance of Chondrilla juncea in southeastern Australia. J. Appl. Ecol. 18: 957-966.

  • Groves, R.H. (Ed.). 1981. Australian Vegetation. Cambridge University Press.

  • Groves, R.H. 1986. Invasion of Mediterranean ecosystems by weeds. In: Resilience in Mediterranean-type Ecosystems (eds B. Dell et al.), pp. 129-145, Dr W. Junk Publishers, The Hague.

  • Groves, R.H. 1989. Ecological control of invasive terrestrial plants. In: Biological Invasions. A Global Perspective (eds J.A. Drake et al.), pp. 437-461, Wiley, Chichester.

  • Humphries, S.E., Groves, R.H. and Mitchell, D.S. 1992. Plant invasions of Australian ecosystems: a status review and management directions. Kowari 2: 1-134.

  • Adair, R.J. and Groves, R.H. 1998. Impact of environmental weeds on biodiversity: a review and development of a methodology. National Weeds Program, Environment Australia Special Publication, 51 pp.

  • Groves, R.H. 1999. Present vegetation types. In: Flora of Australia, Vol. 1, 2nd edn (ed. A.E.Orchard), pp. 369-401, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

  • Groves, R.H. and Willis, A.J. 1999. Environmental weeds and loss of native plant biodiversity: some Australian examples. Aust. J. Env. Management 6: 164-171.

  • Groves, R.H., Panetta, F.D. and Virtue, J.G. (Eds). 2001. Weed Risk Assessment. CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

  • Groves, R.H. 2002. The impacts of alien plants in Australia. In: Biological Invasions: Economic and Environmental Costs of Alien Plant, Animal and Microbe Species (ed. D. Pimentel), in press, CRC press LLC, Boca Raton, Florida.

  • Groves, R.H. and Whalley, R.D.B. 2002. Ecology of the major Australian grass genera and the grasslands in which they occur. In: Flora of Australia, Vol. 43 (ed. K. Mallett), in press, CSIRO Publishing, Melbourne.

  • Groves, R.H. and Catling, P.C. 2002. Heaths and low open-forests. In: Ecology – An Australian Perspective (eds P.M. Attiwill and B. Wilson), in press, Oxford University Press, Melbourne


Invasive Weeds
Incursion management
Weed eradication
Biological attributes of sleeper weeds