Avena barbata Link Bearded Oat
Schrad., J.Bot.(Schrader) 1799,2:314-315 (1800)

Conservation Code: Not threatened
Naturalised Status: Alien to Western Australia
Name Status: Current

Brief Description
Grazyna Paczkowska, Friday 22 October 1993

Erect annual, grass-like or herb, 0.3-1 m high. Fl. green, Aug to Oct. Grey-white sand, red, brown, gravelly loam, clay.


Beard’s Provinces: Eremaean Province, South-West Province.

IBRA Regions: Avon Wheatbelt, Carnarvon, Esperance Plains, Geraldton Sandplains, Hampton, Jarrah Forest, Mallee, Nullarbor, Swan Coastal Plain, Warren, Yalgoo.

IBRA Subregions: Avon Wheatbelt P1, Avon Wheatbelt P2, Cape Range, Central band, Nullarbor Plain, Dandaragan Plateau, Eastern Mallee, Edel, Fitzgerald, Geraldton Hills, Hampton, Lesueur Sandplain, Northern Jarrah Forest, Perth, Recherche, Southern Jarrah Forest, Warren, Western Mallee, Wooramel.

IMCRA Regions: Abrolhos Islands, Central West Coast, Leeuwin-Naturaliste, Shark Bay, WA South Coast.

Local Government Areas (LGAs): Armadale, Ashburton, Bassendean, Beverley, Bridgetown-Greenbushes, Broomehill-Tambellup, Bruce Rock, Bunbury, Busselton, Cambridge, Canning, Capel, Carnamah, Chapman Valley, Chittering, Cockburn, Coorow, Corrigin, Cranbrook, Cuballing, Cunderdin, Dalwallinu, Dandaragan, Dardanup, Denmark, Dundas, Esperance, Gnowangerup, Goomalling, Gosnells, Greater Geraldton, Harvey, Jerramungup, Kalamunda, Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Kellerberrin, Kojonup, Kondinin, Koorda, Kulin, Lake Grace, Mandurah, Manjimup, Melville, Merredin, Mingenew, Moora, Morawa, Mount Marshall, Mundaring, Murray, Narembeen, Narrogin, Nedlands, Northam, Northampton, Perth, Pingelly, Plantagenet, Quairading, Ravensthorpe, Rockingham, Serpentine-Jarrahdale, Shark Bay, South Perth, Stirling, Swan, Three Springs, Toodyay, Victoria Plains, Wagin, Wanneroo, Waroona, Wickepin, Wongan-Ballidu, Wyalkatchem, York.

Management Notes (for the Swan NRM Region)
Kate Brown and Karen Bettink, Monday 18 July 2016

General Biology. Growth form. Grass. Life form. Annual, caespitose. Reproduction. Seed. Dispersal. Possibly wind, agricultural machinery, livestock and mammals (on fur). Photosynthetic Pathway. C3. Seedbank persistence. 6 months to 3 years (shorter if not buried).

Notes. Able to outcompete native grasses. Is allelopathic and forms extensive, fibrous root system. Can increase fire frequencies. Reportedly needs disturbance to establish. Capable of adapting morpho-physiological traits to environmental conditions, such as different water and light availability, higher mean temperatures and altitude. Self-pollinated. Produces prolific seed. Buried seed often remains dormant until exposed by cultivation or other disturbance. Predominantly germinates after onset of autumn rains, compared with Avena fatua which germinates from autumn to spring. Has no adaptions for long distance dispersal. Herbicide resistance has been recorded.

Additional information. Origin. Mediterranean/Asia. History of use/introduction. Contaminant of grain. Similar exotic species. Avena fatua.

Suggested method of management and control. Spray at 3-5 leaf stage with Fusilade® Forte at 16 ml/10 L + wetting agent or for generic fluazifop-p (212g/L active ingredient) 10mL/10L or 0.5L/ha + wetting agent. Repeat over the following 2 years. Aim to prevent seed production. Read the manufacturers' labels and material safety data sheets before using herbicides. For further information consult the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority to determine the status of permits for your situation or state.

Management Calendar

Calendar TypeJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDecComments
Active Growth     YYYYYY  
Germination    YYOO    Seed germinates after rains
Flowering        YYY  
Fruiting           Y 
Optimum Treatment      YYYY   

Legend: Y = Yes, regularly, O = Occasionally, U = Uncertain, referred by others but not confirmed.



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  • Standish, R.J., Cramer, V.A. & Hobbs, R.J. (2008) Land-use legacy and the persistence of invasive Avena barbata on abandoned farmland. Jounal of Applied Ecology, 45 (6): 1576-1583.
  • United States Department of Agriculture (2001) The Plants Database, Version 3.1. URL: http://plants.usda.gov - Accessed December 2007. National Plant Data Center, Baton Rouge, LA 70874-4490 USA.

Project information and acknowledgements