Pretty Betsy

Pretty Betsy.

Common name

Pretty Betsy

Scientific Name

Centranthus macrosiphon

Type of plant


About this weed

This pretty pink annual is often found in open ground and it forms carpets of colour during the spring and early summer. Originally introduced as a garden ornamental it originates from northern Africa and southwestern Europe.


Pretty Betsy is a small, erect annual growing to 0.4 m high. Flowers form rounded heads above the leaves and are hermaphrodite (have both male and female parts) and are pollinated by bees, moths & butterflies. Seed is dispersed by soil movement, garden waste and possibly wind and water. The seedbank persists for up to 1 year.

Impact on Bushland

If left undisturbed it spreads rapidly in bushland and prefers calcareous soils. This weed has naturalised on roadsides and in the Tuart woodland where it can spread rapidly into undisturbed understorey vegetation.


Found in disturbed areas with grey sand over limestone in the South-West Province.

Priority for removal

High: major threat to the conservation values of the South-West Province.

Management (hand)

Hand remove small populations. Optimal months to hand weed are June to October.

Management (herbicide)

Spray metsulfuron methyl at 0.1 g/15 L (2 g/ha) + wetting agent OR Logran® at 12.5 g/100L + the penetrant Pulse ® is very effective on adults and juveniles with little off-target damage in coastal heathlands. Read the manufacturers’ labels and material safety data sheets before using herbicides. Optimal months to spray are July to September.

Flowering month/s

August, September, October, November

Flower colour/s

Pink, White

Information source

Additional information

Hussey, B.M.J., Keighery, G.J., Dodd, J., Lloyd, S.G. and Cousens, R.D. (2007) Western weeds. A guide to the weeds of Western Australia, Second Edition, The Weeds Society of Western Australia, Victoria Park, Western Australia.

Pretty Betsy images


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Urban Bushland Council WA Inc

2 Delhi Street West Perth WA 6005

PO Box 326 West Perth WA 6872

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