Cretan Brake

Africa, Eurasia

General description

Fern < 75 cm tall. Rhizome is short and creeping. Stipes are yellow-brown. Fronds are pinnate and green or variegated. Pinnae are < 60 x 40 cm, arranged in 2-7 pairs, narrow and often forked when basal. Spores are borne along outer margin of the pinnae.

What you need to know

Although Cretan brake is not a legally declared pest plant, it may still be invasive in some situations. Consider lower risk alternatives for your garden, such as native plants.

Open areas, riparian margins, forest, rock faces, wasteland, urban areas, roadsides.

Spores dispersed by wind and water. Human-mediated dispersal through deliberate plantings.

May outcompete and suppress regeneration of native vegetation. May hybridise with native Pteris species.

Site Management

Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 2-3 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Dig out

Plant parts requiring disposal: All parts

Disposal options: Remove to greenwaste or landfill if practical


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

No qualifications
Cut stump and paste freshly cut base of stems with metsulfuron gel

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user
Foliar spray with 5g metsulfuron-methyl per 10L of water and 20ml penetrant

CAUTION: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

RPMP status

Not a legally declared pest plant
Cretan brake - Main species image